While truck drivers opposed COVID-19 vaccine mandates and restrictions, and their supporters, a similar convoy and rally for Vancouver, Vancouver Island and the BC Interior met on Saturday in Ottawa.
A ‘slow roll convoy’ was scheduled to leave Langley around 10am on Saturday morning, en route to downtown Vancouver before ending up in Chilliwack.
Live coverage: Truck convoy protests kick off in Ottawa
Another group of protesters would gather at Stanley Park at 11 a.m., before walking to Canada Place and then to the Vancouver Downtown Courts.
On Vancouver Island, a convoy left Campbell River shortly before 8 a.m. for the legislature in Victoria, while a similar event was planned for Cranbrook City Hall at noon.
The Vancouver rallies were scheduled as large crowds descended on Ottawa’s Capitol Hill during the climax of a protest convoy across the country that began last Sunday in British Columbia.
Some participants said they were angry at the end of a vaccine release for cross-border truck drivers, while others called for all COVID-19 measures to be removed and even for the government to be removed.
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Some of the convoy’s organizers also have a history of white nationalism and racism.
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The Canadian Trucking Alliance condemned the convoy Saturday, saying many of the Ottawa protesters “have no connection to the trucking industry.”
“(They) have a separate agenda outside of a disagreement over borderline vaccine requirements,” the statement read.
“As these protests unfold over the weekend, we ask the Canadian public to be aware that many of the people you see and hear in media reports do not have a connection to the trucking industry.”
Some convoy organizers of trucks have a history of white nationalism, racism
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau described the convoy as a “marginal minority” of Canadians, who have “unacceptable views” this week.
An Ipsos poll conducted for Global News this month found that 67 percent of respondents support stricter restrictions on unvaccinated Canadians.
As of Friday, nearly 88 percent of Canada’s population had received two doses of vaccine, while just over 81 percent of British Columbians received two injections.
There are currently 990 people with COVID-19 in BC hospitals, including 141 cases in the ICU.
There were at least 174 COVID-related deaths in British Columbia in January, averaging six people a day.
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