The Truckers Protest has been going on for quite some time now and it seems like Prime Minister, Justin Trudeau, has had enough. Although the protest has not broken any laws or resulted in the harm of innocent people, extreme measures are being taken by the Canadian government to put a stop to the ongoing protest. Justin Trudeau announced on February 14, 2022, that he will invoke the Emergencies Act to deal with the protest in the nation’s capital and at some Canada-U.S border crossings.
The Emergencies Act, previously known as the War Measures Act, was voted into law in 1988 and is supposed to be used by the federal government in the event of a national emergency. The act specifically defines what a “national emergency” is, making it clear how serious a situation needs to be in order to invoke the act. According to the government of Canada website, a national emergency is defined as an urgent, temporary and critical situation that seriously endangers the health and safety of Canadians or that seriously threatens the ability of the government to preserve the sovereignty, security and territorial integrity of Canada. It must be a situation that cannot be effectively dealt with by the provinces and territories, or by any other law of Canada. Within the emergencies act there are four different types of emergencies that can be declared under the act; a public welfare emergency, a public order emergency, an international emergency or a war emergency. Out of all four acts it’s nearly impossible to categorize the truckers protest as one of them.
What doesn’t add up is how the emergency act is only supposed to be invoked when provincial, territorial and federal tools are no longer sufficient to deal with the issues at hand. What has Trudeau done to stop and/or make peace with the peaceful protestors before invoking this act? To invoke such an extreme measure on a peaceful protest “proves the failure of leadership” says Jagmeet Singh, NDP leader. The main reason why the truckers protest has continued for weeks is because Trudeau has decided to do nothing about it. No communication with citizens being harmed by the mandates, no leadership, no resolutions. In result, the truckers are given the opportunity to spread the protest and dig their feet deeper. As Canadians we have the right to protest and Justin Trudeau has taken the easy way out by avoiding this conflict, and for the first time in Canadian history, invoked the emergencies act.
Watch the full video on Justin Trudeau invoking the emergencies act here
Although temporary measures have been taken to put an end to the ongoing protest, we hope that more concrete changes will be made to ensure situations like these don’t happen again in the future. The government can start by giving our rights back by lifting the vaccine and mask mandates. Canada has always preached equality and the right to choose what goes in your body and now is the time to return to what makes us Canadian.