A federal Order in Council (OIC) was introduced this week which is causing major concern for members of the Canadian Trucking Alliance (CTA). The recently published Order in Council states the following:
“As of February 22, 2021, all travellers, whether arriving by land or air will be required to submit their travel and contact information, including a suitable quarantine plan, electronically via ArriveCAN before crossing the border or boarding a flight to Canada.”
CTA is currently clarifying with the Government of Canada whether this requirement applies to essential workers (truck drivers) and if it also applies to U.S. truck drivers entering the country. If the Government of Canada confirms it is defining all travellers to include essential workers, CTA is asking that the federal government delay implementation of this OIC for the trucking industry until the following issues are dealt with:
- A conservative estimate of upwards of 20 percent of the cross-border truck driving community does not currently have access to smartphone technology, meaning alternative methods for complying with this potential requirement must be developed;
- All cross-border trucking companies use communication devices in their vehicles. CTA knows of no system that is currently compatible with the ArriveCAN App. These concerns also extend to privacy issues, making these devices unsuitable for personal use with the ArriveCAN app. The Government of Canada must work with CTA and other stakeholders on this issue.
Beyond the issues noted above, members of the industry who don’t currently have access to smartphone devices will need to be educated on this new requirement.
CTA understands the motivation for health and safety under the OIC, but the direction of mandating the ArriveCAN app in this timeframe and within the current platform of delivery is highly problematic for the trucking industry and the functionality of the US-Canada supply chain.
CTA is highly concerned there will be major delays at land border points as a result of this policy.
The federal government released the voluntary ArriveCAN app for individuals entering Canada in 2020 to make it easier for them to provide their contact information to the Public Health Agency of Canada (PHAC) in advance of entering Canada rather than taking additional time to provide the same information if requested by Canadian border officials.
Members are encouraged to download the ArriveCAN app for free on Google Play and Apple App stores. The app is also accessible on the web.
CTA will forward any additional information to members on this critical issue as soon as we receive clarity from the Government of Canada.