What the US Presidential Proclamation on 2019 Novel Coronavirus Means for Traveling Hunters
By Barbara Crown, Hunter Information Service Liaison
On March 11, 2020, United States President Donald J. Trump signed a Presidential Proclamation suspending entry into the US by foreign nationals who have traveled in the previous 14 days to any of the 26 European countries comprising the Schengen Area.
This restriction has been implemented due to the sustained person-to-person transmission of the 2019 Novel Coronavirus in that region, and it mirrors restrictions already placed on foreign nationals who were physically present in the People’s Republic of China and the Islamic Republic of Iran.
Importantly, this suspension does not apply to US citizens, permanent residents of the US, any alien who is the spouse of a US citizen or lawful permanent citizen, or any alien who is the parent or legal guardian of a US citizen or lawful permanent resident under the age of 21. (Read the complete text of the proclamation here.)
US citizens returning from the Schengen area will be required to travel through select airports where the US Government has implemented enhanced screening procedures. The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) will issue specific instructions on these procedures within the next 48 hours.
An announcement by the DHS Acting Secretary Chad F. Wolf will be posted to the US State Department Travel website and the US Department of Homeland Security website. US hunters planning to travel abroad should check each of these websites for updates before leaving the United States and also before returning. All traveling hunters with travel insurance plans should check their coverage for canceled travel due to government actions.
The Schengen Area has the largest number of confirmed COVID-19 cases (the disease caused by 2019 Novel Coronavirus) outside of China and the infection rates continue to rise. The European states included in Schengen are: Austria, Belgium, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Italy, Latvia, Lichtenstein, Lithuania, Luxemburg, Malta, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden and Switzerland.
This is a fluid situation that bears monitoring by traveling hunters. Watch for updates from SCI as developments occur.