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“People’s lives are being lost,” he said. “These COVID rules are way too far.”

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Ottawa paid $37M to quarantine international arrivals who lacked a proper plan

An Air Tahiti flight taxis at Vancouver International Airport recently. Francis Georgian/PNG

The federal government has been footing for arrivals to Canada who have no place to quarantine during the pandemic, expenses that added up to $37 million in accommodation and food over the past four months.

Tens of thousands of travellers continue to arrive by air and by land, according to Canada Border Services Agency, and must quarantine for 14 days.

If they do not have a suitable plan for quarantine at home, friends, family or in paid accommodation, CBSA will refer them to the health agency “for further assessment,” said the Public Health Agency of Canada.

Between April 1 and Aug. 15, 2,306 travellers have been put up at undisclosed hotels in several cities, including Metro Vancouver, Calgary, Winnipeg, Toronto, Montreal, Halifax and Fredericton.

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