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The province still considering opening borders to rest of Canada

A recent poll from Halifax-based Narrative Research shows 80 percent of Nova Scotians don't want to open the bubble to the rest of Canada
040120 - stephen mcneil
Premier Stephen McNeil (Photo courtesy of Communications Nova Scotia)

Nova Scotia Premier Stephen McNeil has been open about the need to expand the Atlantic bubble to the rest of Canada but with other provinces now seeing a surge of cases of COVID-19, those plans may be getting pushed even further into the background.

After ten days without a new case to add to our total, COVID-19 infection rates remain low in Nova Scotia and that is fueling debate about whether the unrestricted travel should be opened to the rest of the country.

Currently, anyone travelling into the province outside of New Brunswick, Newfoundland and Labrador and Prince Edward Island must self-isolate for 14 days.

However, other regions of Canada have been experiencing an increase of COVID-19 cases, most notably in Ontario and Quebec.

After Thursday's cabinet meeting, McNeil was asked about his position on reopening the borders, a proposition he has continued to suggest is a possibility.

"It's certainly not making it easy when you look at places that are getting actually the highest peaks they've had since, even higher than what they had in the first wave," said McNeil. "Obviously, those things are concerning."

McNeil said the tourism sector and other businesses have struggled, and as the province works through COVID-19 this fall, they will have to learn to adapt to a new normal.

"We'll never get to where this virus is gone until we get a vaccine, but we need to see some level of control and quite honestly, we're also looking at what is the possibility, if you're not self-isolating, what is the tracking method we can use to identify you," said McNeil.

He suggested tracking mechanisms could include an online registration that sends out daily alerts and random checks for travellers.

In the meantime, a recent poll from Halifax-based Narrative Research shows 80 percent of Nova Scotians don't want to open the bubble to the rest of Canada.


About the Author: Steve Gow

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