The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has announced it will extend COVID-19 vaccine requirements for migrants entering the U.S. at the Mexican and Canadian borders.
In a statement on Thursday, DHS said the latest requirements were extended with consultation from several federal agencies such as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
Migrants who travel to the U.S. borders are still required to verbally attest to their current COVID-19 vaccination status, present proof of their vaccination status, and a valid Western Hemisphere Travel Initiative (WHTI)-compliant documents and be prepared to present other required documents to a U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) officer during a border inspection.
“The Biden-Harris Administration is committed to protecting public health while facilitating lawful trade and travel, which is essential to our economic security,” Secretary of Homeland Security Alejandro N. Mayorkas said in a statement.
“That is why, after consulting with CDC and other federal agencies, DHS will continue to require non-U.S. individuals entering the United States via land ports of entry and ferry terminals to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 and provide related proof of vaccination upon request,” Mayorkas concluded.
This comes as COVID-19 testing will no longer be required for migrants who enter the U.S. along the borders.
“The continuation of these requirements helps protect the health and safety of both the personnel at the border and other travelers, as well as U.S. destination communities, and ensures that public health measures governing land travel align with those that govern incoming international air travel,” the agency said in a statement.
“DHS will closely monitor all relevant circumstances, including the effect of these requirements, and may amend or rescind the requirements at any time. In determining whether and when to rescind this order, DHS anticipates that it will take account of whether the vaccination requirement for non-U.S. air travelers remains in place.”