Ontario Independent

Thursday, June 30, 2022

A truck convoy protesting vaccine mandates travels through Ontario’s northeast on its way to Ottawa

A truck convoy protesting vaccine mandates travels through northern Ontario on its way to Ottawa

Key Takeaways:

  • Hundreds of people gathered to watch a convoy of Canadian truckers protesting COVID-19 vaccine mandates pass through northeastern Ontario on their way to Ottawa for a national rally on Friday.
  • Theresa Paradis and her daughter Sam Laforest were among those who came out to support the convoy as it drove through the northeastern part of Ontario.

Hundreds of individuals watched a convoy of Canadian truckers protesting COVID-19 vaccine mandates pass through northeastern Ontario on their way to Ottawa for a national rally on Friday.

This convoy is part of a bigger protest, dubbed the Freedom Convoy by organizers, which includes transport truck drivers from across the country. It passed through southwestern Ontario on Thursday and is expected to arrive on Parliament Hill on Saturday.

Theresa Paradis and her daughter Sam Laforest were among those who showed up to support the convoy as it drove through Ontario’s northeast.

Also read: As the number of ICU patients declines, Ontario reports further 70 COVID-19 deaths

In the bitter cold, the two stood on the edge of Highway 17 in Thessalon, holding a cardboard sign that read “Freedom of Choice.” Both said they’ve been vaccinated twice but oppose government mandates.

“We’ve arrived in Canada. We are fortunate to live in a free country. We should be able to make our own decisions, “Paradis stated.

“That is the foundation of our country,” Laforest, a retired Canadian soldier who served in Afghanistan, said.

“I support vaccination and doing everything we can to stop the pandemic… That is, however, our choice.”

“Unfortunately, it takes a man with a 100,000-pound vehicle to make a point,” stated Stewart Holman, who retired lately to the Thessalon area after 42 years as a truck driver.

He disclosed that he had lately lost his wife. He did receive three doses of the COVID-19 vaccine to visit her in the hospital, but he is sceptical of the government’s response to the pandemic.

“It’s time to get this straightened out,” Holman said as he watched the convoy pass by on Highway 17.

“Something isn’t right. There’s something that needs to be reconsidered.”

Kaija Nordgren was holding her son Zeke, who is “nearly two and loves trucks,” on the side of a highway in the hamlet of Sowerby.

The woman from Sault Ste. Marie said she didn’t want to get immunized, but she had no choice because it was required for her job as a social worker.

A truck convoy protesting vaccine mandates travels through northern Ontario on its way to Ottawa
A truck convoy protesting vaccine mandates travels through northern Ontario on its way to Ottawa. Image from The Boston Globe

“I had to take that jab to keep food on the table and pay our bills,” Nordgren explained.

“Allow us to live. Let us get back to living our lives.”

She expressed her sadness at seeing Canadians become more polarised due to the pandemic.

“It’s okay to have an opinion without someone telling you you’re wrong,” she said.

“It’s fine to have different points of view.”

The western branch of the Freedom Convoy 2022, which includes about 100 trucks and 200 other vehicles, divided into two Thursdays when it arrived in Nipigon, with one group that takes Highway 11 and another proceeding on Highway 17.

They’ll meet up in North Bay again on Friday afternoon before heading to Ottawa.

Extremists and fringe groups have turned to social media since the convoy of trucks as well as other vehicles left British Columbia for Ottawa, encouraging followers to drop on the capital, destroy property, and threaten elected officials — all of which have been denounced by convoy organizers.

They claim that those viewpoints are unwelcome and that their main goal is to peacefully protest vaccination regulations.

Source: Global News

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