The White House
Office of the Press Secretary
March 20, 2020
PRESIDENT DONALD J. TRUMP IS TAKING NECESSARY SAFETY MEASURES AT THE BORDER TO PREVENT FURTHER SPREAD OF THE CORONAVIRUS
“I will never hesitate to take any necessary steps to protect the lives, health, and safety of the American people. I will always put the wellbeing of America first.” – President Donald J. Trump
PROTECTING PUBLIC HEALTH: President Trump is taking action at our northern and southern borders to prevent further spread of the coronavirus in the United States.
* The United States has reached mutual agreements with Canada and Mexico to restrict non-essential travel across our northern and southern borders.
* The United States will expeditiously return aliens who cross between ports of entry or are otherwise not allowed to enter the country, as the facilities in which these aliens would normally be held cannot support quarantine for the time needed to assess potential cases.
+ These aliens are processed in stations designed for short-term processing, where distancing is not a viable option, creating a serious danger of an outbreak.
+ The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has determined that these conditions present a serious infection control challenge and are a risk to public health.
+ Should an outbreak occur at these facilities, local medical facilities would be forced to devote extensive resources and may become overwhelmed.
+ This action will also protect the health of our country’s dedicated border agents and other law enforcement personnel, who are vital to the security of our Nation.
* Trade and business travel will continue to operate across our borders, ensuring workers and goods are not impeded.
+ American citizens, lawful permanent residents, and individuals with valid travel documents will be exempted.
+ CBP will continue to process cargo, as there has been no identified health threat related to cargo shipments.
+ Entry for trade and business travel will continue to operate with additional screening.
SAFETY MEASURES AT THE BORDER: Numerous countries around the world have taken safety measures at their borders to stem the spread of the virus.
* The President, like dozens of other leaders across the world, is taking action to protect the health and wellbeing of our citizens during this public health crisis.
* Similar measures have been taken by numerous countries.
+ A number of countries have closed or restricted their borders to neighboring countries or the international community together.
STEMMING THE SPREAD OF THE CORONAVIRUS: President Trump acted early and decisively to restrict travel from impacted areas and continues to do so.
* President Trump took action early to restrict travel from China and stem the spread of coronavirus to the United States.
* The President took further action to restrict travel from additional impacted areas, including Iran, Europe, the United Kingdom, and Ireland.
+ American citizens are exempt from the travel restrictions and are being routed to select airports, where they can be properly screened.
* The State Department has issued a global level 4 travel advisory, informing Americans that they should avoid all international travel.
~~ Further information will be posted as released.