Ontario’s Premier Doug Ford has lifted a previously declared state of emergency in response to protests against COVID-19’s obligations and restrictions.
Ford’s office said in a statement on February 23 that the “emergency tools” provided to law enforcement agencies are still valid so far, “because police continue to deal with ongoing activities on the ground.” Said there was.
“We continue to thank all frontline officers and first responders for helping to peacefully resolve the situation in Ottawa, Windsor, and other parts of the state,” the statement said. rice field.
Ford made an emergency on February 11, about two weeks after a large truck fleet arrived in Ottawa on January 29, to protest the federal vaccine obligations for cross-border truck drivers. Was declared.
The protest quickly spread to the national movement, with supporters participating and calling for the end of all COVID-19 obligations and restrictions. In Ontario, protesters set a blockade at Windsor’s Canadian-US border crossing during demonstrations.
Ford then enacted a fine of up to $ 100,000 for blocking critical infrastructure, promising to approve the removal of the license if people did not comply.
He said he intends to make some of the temporary measures he has enacted to end the blockade permanent.
But for now, Ford’s office has said it will cancel the state of emergency. That is, the state government can no longer enact new orders, but existing orders can remain at least for some time, including orders that give police the power to fine and revoke their licenses. Fourteen days after they were enacted, a Ford spokesman said.
The government will need to decide whether to expand police power by February 26.
Ford’s office said it was working with the federal government to end the state of emergency.
On February 23, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said he would revoke the use of the emergency law as protests at Ottawa and the border crossing subsided.
Trudeau enacted a law on February 14 to expel protesters camp in downtown Ottawa for three weeks and quell other protests in solidarity with opposition in the capital. Gives the police drastic authority.
The Ottawa demonstration was almost cleared as of February 21, and the blockade at the border crossing has ended.
Windsor Lift State of Emergency
Mayor Windsor also announced the lifting of the state of emergency on February 24th. This was previously declared in protest to block the border crossing on the Ambassador Bridge.
“Today, after consulting with Windsor police and the city administration, I will lift the state of emergency declared in connection with the illegal occupation of the Ambassador Bridge and the consequent turmoil along Huron Church Road,” said Mayor Drew Dilkens. Said in a statement..
“The imminent threat has been resolved and we have experienced about a week of cross-border trade unimpeded.”
Dickens said the city has secured an injunction from the Ontario High Court to provide law enforcement agencies with additional tools to protect roads essential for cross-border trade.
Dickens will formally call on the state and federal governments to provide financial support for the Windsor government to share all costs associated with breaking the blockade and securing the Huron Church Road in the coming weeks. Said.
Canadian Press contributed to this article.