Health Minister Jean-Yves Duclos says the Canadian federal government will announce changes to COVID-19 measures at Canada’s borders next week, National Newswatch reported. .
Truckers, who have gridlocked the parliament district in Canada’s capital, Ottawa, and who have blockaded four major ports of entry into the country are hoping the government has heard their pleas and will eliminate the cross-border vaccine mandate on truckers that was put into effect on Jan. 15. The mandate was the catalyst for the protests raging across the country and in numerous other countries.
However, the truckers will still need to contend with the Biden administration that has also placed a vaccine mandate on cross-border truckers, purportedly due to lobbying by the Trudeau government.
Duclos says that the worst of the pandemic is behind us and measures, implemented in an attempt to limit the spread of the virus, will be tweaked accordingly. He advocated for more children to be vaccinated and asserted that Canada must administer more booster shots to adults.
The announcement comes as Ontario Premier, Doug Ford, declared a province-wide state of emergency on Friday due to the ongoing peaceful protests that are raging across his province.
At a press conference Ford said, “We’re now two weeks into the siege of the city of Ottawa. I call it a siege because that’s what it is. It’s an illegal occupation.”
The Ford government is under increasing pressure as border blockades at two major points of entry into the province show little signs of abating. Truckers did open a lane of traffic on the Ambassador Bridge that links Detroit Michigan and Windsor Ontario on Friday however traffic is still slow.
Under the province’s new emergency measures protesters could face fines of up to $100,000 and even jail time.
On Friday, Ford said that Ontario is “on track” to remove almost all COVID-19 restrictions as part of his government’s reopening plan and that he is working to remove the province’s vaccine passport system.