Toronto streets have been shut down as the city braces for another trucker protest
Just one week after the anti-vaccine mandate trucker protest known as the "Freedom convoy" rolled into Toronto, the city is bracing for a repeat of last week's events with reports of a similar demonstration coming to Queen's Park on Sat. Feb. 12 at noon.
Reports have been circulating since Tuesday night that convoy organizers have set their sights on Toronto, now all but confirmed by event flyers shared on social media, a preemptive shutdown of city streets, blockading of intersections, and even rumblings of provincial emergency measures.
Politicians in the fringe People's Party of Canada are among those distributing flyers online to drum up support for the rally. This seems to be the party closest aligned to the so-called "freedom movement," its flag a common sight recent anti-mandate demonstrations.
One online flyer for the demonstration circulating on social media shows that the truckers intend to meet up at locations around the region before converging on Queen's Park at noon.
If you're in the area of First Street in Orangeville, Vaughan Mills, Scarborough, Town Centre, Yorkdale Mall, Sherway Gardens, 403 and Dundas, or Taylor Road in Niagara Falls, your weekend might get off to a loud start with truck horns blaring as trucks use area parking lots to assemble.
It appears that the province is taking the protests seriously, as a similar demonstration shuts down the Ambassador Bridge connecting Windsor to Detroit, clogging a vital lifeline to the country. There is now word that premier Ford is considering some heavy options to bring these disturbances to an end.
Breaking: sources tell me Ontario will invoke new emergency measures tomorrow and possibly state of emergency to give province new powers to enforce penalties against protestors. New emergency powers from Ontario to come into effect tomorrow. #cdnpoli— Evan Solomon (@EvanLSolomon) February 11, 2022
As the province weighs its options, the city has already begun bracing for the arrival of protesters, Toronto Police blocking off many downtown streets to vehicle traffic and keeping routes clear for emergency vehicles. Police have announced that they intend to hold a press conference at 1 p.m. on Friday to update the public on the situation.
The Toronto Police Services Board issued a statement on the impending protests after board members were briefed on the plan of action. "The Board is supportive of Chief Ramer's and the Service's plan, and the extensive work that is underway to provide adequate and effective policing services this weekend," the statement reads.
The area around Queen’s Park is blocked off as Toronto Police prepare for another possible weekend convoy protest. Residents asked to avoid area. Last weekend’s protest here was noisy but mostly peaceful. Police have additional vehicles/staff/preparations at the ready if needed. pic.twitter.com/MzndpaZmNq— carl hanstke (@carlCityNews) February 11, 2022
Some online are questioning the protest's methods, making it clear that threatening Toronto with traffic is as pointless as threatening London with rain. We can handle a bit of gridlock here, and it's not like they can park their trucks on the subway tracks.
You know the people in the truck convoy are misinformed because they thought gridlock would intimidate Torontonians. We grew up with traffic jams, we were shaped by them. We THRIVE in bad traffic. Standing in front of vehicles and yelling at them is a rite of passage for us https://t.co/hYETZ7OAge— John Chidley-Hill (@jchidleyhill) February 10, 2022
If the previous demonstration in Toronto is a precedent of what's to come, the city will soon be drowned in a cacophony of truck horns and paralyzed with traffic.
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