COVID-19 emergency checkpoints strain long-standing free movement between provinces

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Checkpoints on bridges into Ottawa were in place Wednesday afternoon. There were no restrictions on people leaving Quebec, only on those entering. “By limiting entry and exit, public health authorities believe they can further limit and prevent the spread of COVID-19,” the government said in its announcement. Since Saturday, the government has had internal checkpoints in several locations, aiming to limit non-essential travel. The Outaouais, the region surrounding Gatineau, was added to the list on Monday, along with four other parts of the province. Asked about Quebec restricting inter-provincial movement Wednesday, Deputy Prime Minister Chrystia Freeland said Quebec has the federal government’s “support and admiration.”