Federal Health Minister Invokes Quarantine Act for Travelers Returning to Canada

Federal Health Minister Invokes Quarantine Act for Travelers Returning to Canada 

Earlier today while making an appearance at the Senate, Federal Health Minister Patty Hajdu declared that the government was done just asking Canadians returning from abroad to self-isolate. She is now invoking the Quarantine Act which will force all returning Canadians to do so.

For more on the Quarantine Act and what it entails please refer to the information below. 

Quarantine Act

S.C. 2005, c. 20

Assented to 2005-05-13

An Act to prevent the introduction and spread of communi­cable diseases

Her Majesty, by and with the advice and consent of the Senate and House of Commons of Canada, enacts as follows:

Short Title

Short title

1 This Act may be cited as the Quarantine Act.

Interpretation

Definitions

2 The following definitions apply in this Act.

communicable disease means a human disease that is caused by an infectious agent or a biological toxin and poses a risk of significant harm to public health, or a disease listed in the schedule, and includes an infectious agent that causes a communicable disease. (maladie transmissible)

conveyance means a watercraft, aircraft, train, motor vehicle, trailer or other means of transportation, including a cargo container, that arrives in Canada or is in the process of departing from Canada. (véhicule)

departure point means any point designated by the Minister under section 10. (point de sortie)

entry point means a point designated by the Minister under section 9 or a point where a customs office, within the meaning of subsection 2(1) of the Customs Act, is located. (point d’entrée)

health assessment means an evaluation of the relevant medical history and the travel history of a traveller and a physical examination, including an examination of the traveller’s head, neck and extremities and the measurement of vital signs such as the traveller’s temperature, heart rate and respiratory rate. (contrôle médical)

medical examination includes ascertaining the relevant medical history and the travel history of the person being examined, the conduct of a physical examination and any laboratory tests or radiographic or diagnostic tests that are required to make a determination of whether the person might have a communicable disease. (examen médical)

medical practitioner means a person who is entitled to practise medicine by the laws of a province. (médecin)

Minister means the Minister of Health. (ministre)

operator means any person in charge of a conveyance, and includes the conveyance crew. (conducteur)

owner, other than in section 43, includes a lessee. (propriétaire)

peace officer means a person referred to in paragraphs (c) and (g) of the definition peace officer in section 2 of the Criminal Code. (agent de la paix)

prescribed means prescribed by regulation. (Version anglaise seulement)

quarantine facility means any place that is used for the detention of a traveller. (installation de quarantaine)

quarantine station means any place that is used for the administration and enforcement of this Act. (poste de quarantaine)

screening officer means a person designated as a screening officer under subsection 5(1) or an officer within the meaning of subsection 2(1) of the Customs Act. (agent de contrôle)

traveller means a person, including the operator of a conveyance, who arrives in Canada or is in the process of departing from Canada. (voyageur)

vector means an insect or animal capable of transmitting a communicable disease. (vecteur)

Binding on Her Majesty

Binding on Her Majesty

3 This Act is binding on Her Majesty in right of Canada or of a province.

Purpose

Purpose

4 The purpose of this Act is to protect public health by taking comprehensive measures to prevent the introduction and spread of communicable diseases.

Powers of Minister

Designating analysts and certain officers

  • 5 (1) The Minister may designate qualified persons, or classes of qualified persons, as analysts, screening officers or environmental health officers.
  • Designating quarantine officers(2) The Minister may designate medical practitioners or other qualified health care practitioners, or classes of such persons, as quarantine officers.
  • Designating review officers(3) The Minister may designate medical practitioners as review officers.
  • Certificate to be produced(4) The Minister shall give a certificate of designation to every screening officer who is not also a customs officer, to every quarantine officer and to every environmental health officer. An officer to whom a certificate has been given shall produce it, on request, to the person in charge of a place or conveyance that the officer inspects and to any person that the officer questions.

Quarantine station

  • 6 (1) The Minister may establish a quarantine station at any place in Canada.
  • Provision and maintenance of area or facility(2) The operator of a facility in which a customs office, within the meaning of subsection 2(1) of the Customs Act, is located shall, when required in writing by the Minister, provide and maintain free of charge any area or facility, along with its fixtures, that the Minister considers necessary for establishing a quarantine station.

Quarantine facilities

7 The Minister may by order designate any place in Canada as a quarantine facility and amend, cancel or reinstate the designation.

Duty to provide

  • 8 (1) Any person in charge of a place shall, at the request of the Minister, provide that place to the Minister if, in the opinion of the Minister, the temporary use of the place as a quarantine facility is necessary to protect public health.
  • Deeming(2) The place is deemed to be designated as a quarantine facility.
  • Compensation(3) The Minister may compensate any person for the Minister’s use of the place.
  • Consultation(4) The Minister shall consult with the provincial public health authority of the province in which the place is situated before taking possession of it.

Designation of entry point

9 The Minister may by order designate any point in Canada as an entry point.

Designation of departure point

10 The Minister may by order designate any point in Canada as a departure point if, in the opinion of the Minister, the order is necessary to prevent the spread of a communicable disease.

Ministerial agreements

11 The Minister may enter into an agreement with a department or an agency of the Government of Canada or of a province, or with a public health authority, respecting the administration and enforcement of this Act or of an Act of a province.

Travellers

Obligation on arriving travellers

12 Every person who is subject to subsection 11(1) of the Customs Act and enters Canada shall, immediately after entering, present themselves to a screening officer at the nearest entry point.

Obligation on departing travellers

13 Every person who leaves Canada through a departure point shall, immediately before leaving, present themselves to a screening officer or quarantine officer at the departure point.

Screening technology

14 (1) Any qualified person authorized by the Minister may, to determine whether a traveller has a communicable disease or symptoms of one, use any screening technology authorized by the Minister that does not involve the entry into the traveller’s body of any instrument or other foreign body.

Refusal to be screened

(2) If a traveller refuses to be screened with the screening technology and the person using it is not a screening officer or quarantine officer, the person shall immediately inform a screening officer or quarantine officer of the refusal.

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