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Locals plead to keep Canada-U.S. border closed during COVID-19 pandemic (MAP)

"A picture can tell a thousand words."
COVID-19 map

A disturbing graphic from the Johns Hopkins University has sparked a conversation on social media about reopening the Canada-U.S. border in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic.

In January, the John Hopkins University developed an interactive map that displays new confirmed cases of COVID-19 around the world.  And while the map has changed significantly across the globe since the start of the year, it shows a stark difference in numbers south of the Canadian border. 

Now, the United States is painted with a sea of red, which represents the staggering number of postive cases across the country. In contrast, Canada looks quite bare. With this in mind, the Canadian population is 37.59 million, which is roughly 11.5 per cent of the U.S. population (328.2 million). 

Nevertheless, the number of confirmed cases in the United States exceeds 3 million. In Canada, there are over 100,000.

In June, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said Canada and the United States will continue to limit non-essential travel between the two countries until at least July 21. 

Despite mounting pressure from business interests and border communities, however, Trudeau is offering no clues about how the border restrictions will be eased when the time finally comes.

The 30-day restrictions were first imposed in March in the face of the threat of the COVID-19 pandemic, and have now been extended three times.

People on both sides of the Canada-U.S. border are sharing their thoughts about the interactive map on social media, with many Canadians urging officials to keep it closed for the foreseeable future. 

One person commented, "A picture can tell a thousand words."

You can view the map here

— with files from the Canadian Press.