Tiny Point Roberts seeks more access to BC services

Petition to open border

Point Roberts residents have started an online petition to increase the list of essential reasons to cross the border during the COVID-19 pandemic.

A petition on change.org urges the Department of Homeland Security as well as four others, including Delta MP Carla Qualtrough and Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, to loosen restrictions.

The Canada-U.S. border, including the crossing to Point Roberts at the foot of 56th Street, closed to all non-essential travel in late March, which has isolated residents of the tiny American peninsula.

The petition states: “Point Roberts citizens cannot, as examples, access dealer based or specialty based vehicle maintenance or tire repair, visit their second home on the mainland or in Point Roberts for repairs and maintenance, buy groceries and household goods not available in Point Roberts, apply for employment on the mainland or receive health care for their pets. Residents also request the ability to access services in Tsawwassen, as Point Robert Citizens are not a health risk to Tsawwassen residents.”

The petition claims full-time residents of Point Roberts are a special group when it comes to COVID-19. It says at this time there are no known cases among any of the Point’s 1,314 full-time residents, over 300 of which have been tested.

“We request a special dispensation to traverse the 26 miles of Canadian roads to get to Blaine, WA and the U.S. mainland, and back, without stopping in Canada, which creates virtually no health risk to Canadians. The only other option is to travel by air at $135 each way and available only once a week, or by private boat.”

As of Friday afternoon, more than 700 had signed the petition.

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