To the Editor,
Many Canadians ask, “Why are there travel restrictions on car trips while international flights are basically unhindered?” I say, perhaps that’s because car travellers, unlike the airlines, don’t have very potent lobbyists in Ottawa.
With the 30-day exception of India and Pakistan, the federal government is allowing non-essential air travel to and from COVID-19-devastated nations, notably Brazil. While the airlines benefit from continued ticket sales, I’d venture there’s little or no public interest in permitting such unnecessary air travel. It does, however, create further risk of COVID-19 variant importation.
I believe that when the coronavirus crisis began, big business was the most influential voice to have the ear of government, when it should have been the independent health-sciences community. The result was resistance against an immediate halt in non-essential travel, including international flights — weeks of delay that may have translated into many additional and needless COVID-19 deaths.
Frank Sterle Jr.,
White Rock, B.C.