It is now forbidden to cross the border of Quebec and Ontario without a valid reason. Members of the Vaudreuil-Soulanges region, a region bordering our English-speaking neighbor, have spoken out on the measures announced.
Vaudreuil-Soulanges MP Peter Schiefke reacted very briefly to the problem. By email, its communications director indicated that this was a decision that stems only at the provincial level. She referred us to the two members of the region, Marilyne Picard and Marie-Claude Nichols. So, no political comment from the federal deputy.
A government of few words
MP Marilyne Picard was contacted via email. Unfortunately, no response has taken place. Mrs. Picard is however the riding most affected by this measure.
The opposition is worried
Marie-Claude Nichols, was the only elected to grant us an interview on the subject. She specifies that the problem of back and forth between Ontario and Quebec has been present for several weeks.
“I am a resident of my riding, she says. I’m not an ostrich. I can see the hundreds of Ontario plated cars going to our supermarkets.”
Mrs. Nichols says the issue was reported to the government almost three weeks ago. She does not understand that there was no measure or directive put in place before.
“We have a government that holds press briefings almost every day, explains the member for Vaudreuil. They had the opportunity to give directives to Quebecers such as restricting their travel to Ontario. I believe the government has waited to act alongside Ontario’s public health.”
A closure that makes sense
Mrs. Nichols says she agrees with the closure. “I believe that the fact that we are in the red zone, in the Montreal Metropolitan Community (MMC) and a neighboring province which has more than 4,500 cases per day, justifies the closure of the borders, said MP Nichols. What I regret is the slowness of the process. Our cases are increasing in the region and a decision should have been taken sooner.”
Mrs. Nichols sympathizes with the people who live on the border. She says she understands the situation. She says it is sometimes faster to go to the convenience store or the grocery store in Ontario than in Quebec. However, this measure is in place to curb the spread of variants.
“I had a woman on the phone telling me about her shared custody situation. The father of her children is in Ontario and she resides in Quebec.
I reassured her by explaining that with her court order in hand, she could continue to see her children. The purpose of this closure is to stop the spread between provinces and not to restrict families.”
On the side of the Sûreté du Québec, Béatrice Dorsinville, responsible for communications with the media, indicates that the police force will carry out random checkpoints in order to enforce the measure.
“We will make sure to enforce the measure. For our part, we must limit access to Quebec territory to residents of Ontario”, concludes the spokesperson.