Trudeau conducts virtual regional outreach as pandemic shuts down travel

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Prime Minister Justin Trudeau isn't letting the COVID-19 pandemic stop his usual practice of travelling to various regions of the country during the summer -- he's now just doing it virtually.

He'll spend much of today in meetings with British Columbia political, business, environmental and academic leaders, all from the comfort of his office in Ottawa.

And he'll do another similar virtual tour of the Atlantic provinces Thursday.

The summer is usually an opportunity for the prime minister and other federal political leaders to travel widely and engage in outreach with community leaders and voters outside the Ottawa bubble.

Among other things, Trudeau usually convenes a cabinet retreat and attends a Liberal caucus retreat outside the nation's capital each year before Parliament resumes in the fall.

But the need to curb the spread of COVID-19 has put the kibosh on much of that in-person travel this year.

Apart from the occasional trip to Toronto, Montreal and communities near Ottawa, Trudeau has been forced to stay home -- and find other ways to conduct regional outreach.