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U.S. Commerce Secretary Gary Locke's Statement on U.S. Tourism and the Emergency Declaration for H1N1 Flu

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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

CONTACT OFFICE OF PUBLIC AFFAIRS

202-482-4883

U.S. Commerce Secretary Gary Locke’s Statement on U.S. Tourism and the Emergency Declaration for H1N1 Flu

“The October 23 declaration was a precautionary measure to ensure that, if needed, medical treatment facilities in the U.S. will have the tools they need to deal with 2009 H1N1 influenza as efficiently as possible.

“Without the proper context, I know the declaration may have been a cause for concern among some abroad who had been planning travel to the U.S. But let me be very clear: The measure does not represent any change in status of the H1N1 influenza in our country. It was instead an important procedural tactic to help the government and U.S. medical facilities better handle the illness in the future.

“The United States is a top destination for millions of foreign travelers, and this great country remains a safe place to visit. There are no travel restrictions to or from the U.S., and I want to continue to encourage travelers to explore America and discover its cultural, historic and recreational resources.”