As the “Freedom Convoy” of truckers protesting Canada’s vaccine mandates rolled through southeast Alberta, Canadian government officials reiterated support for the policy that requires Canadian and U.S. truckers to show proof of vaccination in order to cross the border.
The Defender – As the “Freedom Convoy” of truckers protesting Canada’s vaccine mandates rolled through southeast Alberta, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau Monday slammed conservative politicians, accusing them of fear-mongering.
“I regret that the Conservative Party and conservative politicians are fear-mongering to Canadians about the supply chain, but the reality is that vaccination is how we’re going to get through this,” Trudeau told reporters who asked if the mandate policy could disrupt supply chains.
The 93-mile long convoy is traveling from the country’s westernmost province, British Columbia, toward Ottawa, the country’s capital, where they will hold a demonstration on Jan. 29. The truckers said they will not leave until the mandates are lifted.
The Toronto Star reported the convoy drew “large crowds of supporters from across the region, many holding signs and waving flags.”
(LifeSiteNews) – The “Freedom Convoy 2022” truckers’ group blasted the Canadian Trucking Alliance (CTA) as “spineless” after the association said it “strongly” disapproves of the thousands of truckers driving to Ottawa this week to protest COVID mandates.
In a statement sent out this past Saturday, the CTA said it “disapproves of any protests on public roadways, highways, and bridges.”
“CTA believes such actions – especially those that interfere with public safety – are not how disagreements with government policies should be expressed.”
In a January 24 Facebook post, organizers for the “Freedom Convoy 2022” wrote, “The Canadian Trucking Alliance is a spineless private organization that does not speak for us.”
The group also noted that they are not “anti-vaccination” but rather “anti-government mandates.”
“No more lockdowns. No forced vaccination (and yes, it IS force when you choose between a shot you don’t want and your ability to feed yourself),” wrote the group.Thousands of Canadian truckers have joined in the “Freedom Convoy 2022,” which began its “slow roll” to Ottawa this weekend to protest draconian COVID jab mandates and other virus rules imposed by Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and provincial premiers.
Chris Barber of Swift Current, Saskatchewan, who is a trucker driving in the convoy and is also one of the “Freedom Convoy 2022” organizers, said in an online video posted Monday that he was “never” aware of the CTA until recently.
“I’ve been in this industry 28 years in Canada, I’ve never heard of the Canadian Trucking Alliance, nor have they ever spoken for me,” said Barber, who goes by the Tik Tok handle BigRed19755.
“Probably 90 percent of the drivers out here don’t give a *hit about the Canadian Trucking Alliance.”
CFIB urges Ottawa to reverse trucker vaccine rule amid driver shortage, higher costs
TORONTO — Canada’s largest association of small and medium-sized businesses is urging the federal government to reverse its policy banning unvaccinated truck drivers from entering Canada.
The Canadian Federation of Independent Business says the vaccine mandate is creating supply shortages and driving up shipping costs.
CFIB president Dan Kelly says businesses were already facing a major supply chain crunch and price increases on everything from fuel to building materials.
He says Ottawa’s border policy threatens to exacerbate those issues at a time when small businesses can’t handle any additional costs or uncertainty.
The CFIB represents 95,000 small- and medium-sized enterprises in Canada, including roughly 500 in the trucking sector.
The business group says the transportation industry has been one of the hardest hit by labour shortages, with a recent survey finding 68 per cent of businesses in the sector are unable to hire enough staff.
Canada police fear violence at trucker vaccine protest
OTTAWA, Ontario (AP) — A convoy of truckers set to descend on Ottawa to protest a vaccine mandate for cross-border drivers is prompting Canadian police to prepare for violence and politicians to warn against escalating rhetoric linked to the demonstration.
Ottawa police Chief Peter Sloly said Wednesday officers had been in been in contact with protest leaders whom he said have been co-operative and shared their plans. But Deputy Chief Steve Bell voiced concern about “parallel groups” that intelligence suggests will also turn up to the protest.
Tory MPs Voice Support for Truckers’ ‘Freedom Convoy’ Protest Against Vaccine Mandate
A number of Conservative MPs have taken to social media to voice support for the truck drivers en route to Ottawa in a cross-country convoy protesting the federal government’s COVID-19 vaccine mandate.
Canada’s public health chief suggests vaccines and masks should be voluntary
(LifeSiteNews) – Canada’s public health czar departed from the mainstream government narrative by suggesting that vaccinations and mask wearing should be voluntary.
Dr. Howard Njoo, the deputy chief epidemiologist with the Public Health Agency of Canada, told reporters that vaccination is “a voluntary choice” while explaining that governments would be better off avoiding the use of coercion, according to Blacklock’s Reporter.
Major grocery store chain confirms trucker vaccine mandate is increasing costs
True North – The CEO of a major grocery chain has admitted that the COVID vaccine requirement for cross-border truckers is raising the cost of shipping fresh foods to Canadian stores.
Metro CEO Eric La Fleche made the comments to analysts on a conference call Monday, according to Bloomberg. Metro has stores across Ontario and Quebec, including the popular Jean Coutu Group.