Governor Andrew Cuomo is planning to make Canadian nationals and permanent residents eligible to receive COVID vaccines at three new State-run mass vaccination sites at the Niagara Falls Airforce Base, Fort Drum, and the Plattsburg International Airport, beginning as early as June 15th. Each site is expected to be managed by the New York National Gaurd, and all Canadians over the age of 18 will be eligible — if federal regulators approve the Cuomo administration’s plan. President Joe Biden is expected to support the Governor’s plan and may encourage the Governor Gretchen Wilson of Michigan and Governor Jay Inslee of Washington State to do the same.
The announcement comes as the Coronavirus has ravaged Ontario, which is now suffering from a peek ‘fourth wave’. The government of Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, meanwhile, has been unable to develop a Canadian vaccine and failed to procure sufficient vaccines from foreign manufacturers. Canada trails the developed world in inoculations against the Coronavirus.
Residents of Quebec will be eligible to receive the vaccine at the Plattsburg site; while residents of Eastern Ontario will be eligible to receive it at Fort Drum; and residents of Southern Ontario will be eligible to receive it at the Niagara Falls Airforce Base.
It’s thought that upwards of three million Canadians might travel to New York to receive the vaccine between June 15 and August 15.
“New York is a border state, and therefore our State isn’t going to be fully back open until our border is fully back open,” Cuomo has told close aides. “When New Yorkers are in a position to help our neighbors, that’s exactly what New Yorkers do.”
Cuomo and State Health Commissioner Howard Zucker have become embattled in a series of scandals stemming from their handling of the State’s pandemic response — including a March 2020 order that is responsible for thousands of unnecessary deaths at state-funded nursing homes; tampering with public health data; obstructing the Department of Justice’s investigation of nursing home deaths; and allowing Larry Schwartz, a senior political operative, to make phone calls to County Executives predicating access to vaccine supplies on political support for the Governor.