Ford declares state of emergency in Ontario over truck blockades
Premier Doug Ford is declaring a state of emergency in Ontario over the trucking blockades that continue to paralyze parts of Ottawa and threaten jobs and manufacturing at border crossings.
“Today, I am using my authority as Premier of Ontario to declare a state of emergency in our province,” Ford said Friday morning.
“And I will convene cabinet to use legal authorities to urgently enact orders that will make crystal clear it is illegal and punishable to block and impede the movement of goods, people and services along critical infrastructure. This will include protecting international border crossings, 400-series highways, airports, ports, bridges and railways.”
He said the province will also be “protecting the safe and essential movement of ambulatory and medical services, public transit, municipal and provincial roadways, as well as pedestrian walkways. Fines for non-compliance will be severe, with a maximum penalty of $100,000 and up to a year imprisonment.”
The province will also “provide additional authority to consider taking away the personal and commercial licenses of anyone who doesn’t comply with these orders.”
“We are now two weeks into the siege of the City of Ottawa. I call it a siege because that is what it is. It’s an illegal occupation. This is no longer a protest. With a protest, you peacefully make your point and you go back home. And I know that the vast majority of people did that. They came, they peacefully demonstrated, they made their point, and they left. And I want to say to those people — you have been heard — Canada has heard you.”
Now two weeks old, the so-called “Freedom Convoy” of trucker protests and blockades have paralyzed parts of Ottawa and border crossings in Windsor, Sarnia — and others across Canada — and has already led to layoffs at some Ontario manufacturers unable to get needed supplies from the U.S.
American officials have also expressed deep concern about the impact of the blockade at the Ambassador Bridge, which accounts for one-quarter of trade between Canada and the U.S.
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Source: Global News
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