The Biden administration intends to reopen the land borders with Canada and Mexico to vaccinated travelers, The Washington Post reported on Tuesday.
People who are fully vaccinated against COVID-19 will be allowed to enter the U.S. for non-essential reasons including visiting family or tourism beginning in November, according to The Washington Post. Anyone intending to cross the border for non-essential or essential travel is required to be vaccinated in January.
Officials in U.S. border towns have implored the Biden administration to lift pandemic-related travel restrictions following the COVID vaccines becoming available, the Post reported.
The guidelines will not apply to people who enter the U.S. illegally, furthermore the Trump-era public health order that allows rapid expulsions of illegal migrants put in place as a response to the COVID-19 pandemic will remain in place.
President Joe Biden has come under scrutiny by some, for keeping the public health order, Title 42, in place as oftentimes migrants do not request asylum or refuge under the order. Over 1 million illegal migrants have been expelled since its implementation in March 2020.
“The Title 42 restrictions are really about protecting the migrants themselves, the DHS workforce and local communities,” one official said. “There’s a strong public health basis, for the moment, for continuing with the Title 42 restrictions.”
Individuals who enter the U.S. legally at ports of entry are not held in detention centers while those who cross illegally are according to the Post.
The Biden administration also announced plans to lighten restrictions for air travel for foreign citizens who wish to legally visit the U.S. in November.