Government of Canada COVID-19 Information Recap – Friday, March 20, 2020
There were two main topics the Prime Minister focused on during his now-routine update to the nation concerning the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic: the closure of the border with the United States and the additional manufacturing capacity being sought to produce vital medical supplies.
Concerning the border, Justin Trudeau says there will be a complete closure to all but essential-service travellers effective at midnight tonight. This builds on earlier restrictions announced prior in the week to travellers coming to Canada for other nations.
Trudeau also says that a decision has been made to turn away “irregular” border crossers, such as those who are seeking asylum in Canada. These people will no longer be permitted to make an in-country refugee claim in Canada.
Concerning the manufacturing, the Prime Minister said that there is ongoing talks to repurpose existing manufacturing facilities to make vital medical supplies. Among the goods that the government is looking to procure from Canadian manufacturers, either existing or those who retool to help with the emergency are: personal protective equipment (masks, gloves, etc.), sanitization products (disposable paper goods, hand sanitizer, etc.), as well as products used to test, treat and track COVID-19.