Thursday night, Canada native Joseph Decunha drove to a border crossing between Champlain, New York and St. Bernard de Lacolle, Quebec, with his partner and his friend, both of whom are American. They were trying to gain access into the country with the goal of attending the Women’s March in Washington DC.
When they reached the border, the guard asked them their intentions, and whether or not the supported Trump or his policies. Decunha told CNN, “We were honest and said we were anti-Trump and at that point, he engaged me directly in conversation because I assumed I was the only Canadian.” The line of questioning veered towards whether or not the group had been to the Middle East, and if they believed in violence. At that point, Decunha was denied entry into the country due to”silent disruption.” The two Americans traveling with him were allowed entry, but Decunha was not allowed to cross under the purpose of terrorism. Decunha was photographed and fingerprinted before being allowed to return home.
In Quebec, Sasha Dyck was part of a group of six Canadians and two French nationals who wanted to enter the United States to attend Women’s Marches as well. And like Decunha, they were denied entry, photographed and fingerprinted, and told to go home. The border patrol told them had they tried to enter the border again later in the weekend, they would be arrested. Sasha told CNN, “It was just a surprise. I usually think of the [US] as open to diversity of ideas and opinions, but not this weekend.”
CNN contacted the US Border Patrol and Customs for comment, but has not yet received a response.