This is what the world is coming to. And by “world,” we mean “the United States.” The Girl Guides of Canada has announced it will not be taking any trips to the U.S. in the foreseeable future, thanks to President Donald Trump’s latest travel ban, which has led to confusion regarding who can and can’t travel south of the border.
“While the United States is a frequent destination for Guiding trips, the ability of all our members to equally enter this country is currently uncertain,” international commissioner Sharron Callahan and director of provincial operations Holly Thompson wrote in a joint advisory. “This includes both trips that are over or under 72 hours and any travel that includes a connecting flight through an American airport.”
They kept the statement classy, not mentioning Trump’s travel restrictions, but we all know what the women meant. Trump’s first ban didn’t stick, so his second attempt now states that visas for travellers from Iran, Somalia, Sudan, Yemen, Syria and Libya will be suspended for 90 days. CBC reports that some Canadians and permanent residents living in Canada have had problems gaining entry to the U.S. — and the Girl Guides of Canada wasn’t about to let that spoil their fun.
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Sarah Kiriliuk, national manager of marketing and communications for the Girl Guides of Canada, told CBC News Network it was a precautionary decision.
“We have lots of girls across the country that travel every year overseas and to the U.S.,” said Kiriliuk. “We really wanted to make sure that no girl gets left behind.”
With trips planned months in advance, it would suck if anyone got to the border and was turned away. Kiriliuk added, “We wanted to make sure there was zero risk,” she said.
And while it was “difficult” to change the destination of their nationally sponsored summer trip to a camp in California, Callahan and Thompson state in their statement that they “hope that members will appreciate this reflects our commitment to inclusivity and equal opportunities for all girls and women.”
It’s bonkers that this is what it’s come down to, that there’s a chance Girl Guides won’t be allowed to enter the United States. In light of that though, we feel this is a sad but definitely smart move. That said, it’s Canada’s 150th birthday this year! Let’s celebrate it. There are plenty of places for the Guides to go and stay and visit and, ultimately, feel safe and welcome.
— Girl Guides ofCanada (@girlguidesofcan) March 8, 2017