A convoy of Canadian truckers opposing COVID-19 vaccine mandates made their way to Ottawa on Saturday where freedom rallies are taking place in the country's capital.
Protesters embarked on their journey last week, making their way through British Columbia. The group is opposing a new rule, which took effect Jan. 15, that requires truckers entering Canada be fully vaccinated against the coronavirus.
As CBN's Faithwire reported, The U.S. enforced the same requirement on truckers entering that country on Jan. 22.
The Parliamentary Protective Service estimated up to 10,000 people could attend events this weekend, according to the Independent.
Drivers honked their horns as big rigs lined the streets of Ottawa. Video and images shared on social media show countless protesters proudly waving the Canadian flag on Parliament Hill.
— James Melville (@JamesMelville) January 29, 2022
More and more people are joining in, as the #TruckersForFreedom2022 arrive in the capital city of Canada. #TruckersForFreedom #FreedomConvoy2022 #NoVaccineMandates #NoVaccinePassports #NoGreenPass #NonAuPassDeLaHonte pic.twitter.com/qpfaJ3izmy
— (@BananaMediaQ) January 29, 2022
Ariel shot of the small fringe minority outside Parliament, Hill in #Ottawa right now!! What an incredible sight!!#ParliamentHill #TeamFreedom #ConvoyForFreedom #TruckersForFreedom2022 #TruckersForFreedom #fringeminority #CanadaConvoy pic.twitter.com/GU0W53RG9c
— Julie Scott (@julie_ppc) January 29, 2022
One trucker told a reporter that he was participating in the protest to "regain our freedoms."
— Maxime Bernier (@MaximeBernier) January 29, 2022
“I’m locked into my own country right now,” said Tom Pappin, an unvaccinated man who came from just outside Ottawa. “I can’t go on a holiday. I can’t go to a restaurant, I can’t go bowling. I can’t go to a movie. You know, these are things that it’s just gotten out of control.”
A GoFundMe account was also set up by convoy organizers, which has raised more than $7.9 million. The site says funds will be dispersed to truckers to help cover the cost of the journey.
In the description for the GoFundMe account, the organizers asserted the government "is implementing rules and mandates that are destroying the foundation of our businesses, industries, and livelihoods," adding, "Canadians have been integral to the fabric of humanity in many ways that have shaped the planet."
"We are a peaceful country that has helped protect nations across the globe from tyrannical governments who oppress their people, and now it seems it is happening here," the organizers continued. "We are taking our fight to the doorsteps of our federal government and demanding that they cease all mandates against its people. Small businesses are being destroyed, homes are being destroyed, and people are being mistreated and denied fundamental necessities to survive."
While the Canadian Trucking Alliance (CTA) has condemned the "Freedom Convoy," the CEO of the Transportation Intermediaries Association, Anne Reinke, has voiced concerns about placing restrictive mandates on truckers when the economy is in dire straits. She says it'll hurt the U.S. too during an already difficult time.
"Americans are struggling with higher prices and scarce goods, at the grocery store, the gas pump, and diners across the country," she said, according to Trucking Info. "One way to make this drastically worse overnight is to take tens of thousands of truck drivers and forbid them from entering the country, leaving countless amounts of essential freight at the doorstep of our country."
However, CTA President Stephen Laskowski said those wishing to cross the border in a commercial truck must be vaccinated.
"The Government of Canada and the United States have now made being vaccinated a requirement to cross the border. This regulation is not changing so, as an industry, we must adapt and comply with this mandate," remarked Laskowski. "The only way to cross the border, in a commercial truck or any other vehicle, is to get vaccinated."
While vaccines are required to cross America's northern border, U.S. conservatives point out the southern border is wide open - CLICK HERE TO SEE THE LATEST SURPRISING PHOTOS