US Businesses Near Border Struggle With Boundaries’ Closure

FILE - In this Jan. 20, 2021 file photo, a Mexican National Guard stands on the bank of the Suchiate River, the natural border with Guatemala near Ciudad Hidalgo, Mexico. Mexico has announced on Thursday, March 18, 2021, restrictions on non-essential travel on its southern border with Guatemala and Belize, citing the need “to prevent the spread of COVID-19.” (AP Photo/Marco Ugarte, File)

(AP) — Small businesses in border towns across the U.S. are reeling from the economic fallout of the partial closure of North America’s international boundaries.

Restrictions on nonessential travel were put in place a year ago to curb the spread of the virus and have been extended almost every month since. Small businesses, residents and local chambers of commerce say the financial toll has been steep, as have the disruptions to life in communities where it’s common to shop, work and sleep in two different countries. And as more Americans are vaccinated against COVID-19 and infection rates fall across the U.S., many are hoping the restrictions will soon be eased.

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