Homeland Security has been planning to shut down its ports of entry in the coming year to stop the spread of diseases like the coronavirus, which was first detected in the US in late 2017.
The agency has announced it will also shut down border ports of origin, which have become the gateway for migrants crossing into the US from Canada, Mexico, and other countries, and will not reopen ports of land entry.
A Homeland Security spokesman told Reuters news agency on Monday the agency was not sure when it would start to close the ports of access, saying that was something the agency would “work out” in the next few weeks.
It will still be possible for people to travel through the US to Mexico or Canada, but it would be a slow process.
“We’re not sure yet,” the spokesman said.
The spokesman said the agency “will continue to monitor” the coronivirus situation, and added: “We will continue to be a strong advocate for the safety of our nation and the economy.”
Homeland Security, which employs more than 100,000 people, has said that the coronavalvirus pandemic is having a “disastrous impact” on the US economy, and that the country’s population has fallen to a record low.