Canada truck protest continues as Biden pressures Trudeau to end blockade
US President Joe Biden has urged Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau to use federal powers to end the blockade of truckers protesting Covid-19 restrictions as the demonstration is reportedly resulting in $1bn losses each day it drags on.
Mr Biden’s call to action comes as the protests have spread beyond the capital in Ottawa to border crossings into the US, including the Emerson Port of Entry in Manitoba and the Ambassador Bridge that connects Windsor, Ontario, with Detroit.
Some hope for a resolution emerged on Friday morning as protesters opened one lane on the bridge, allowing northbound traffic to proceed into Canada.
The demonstrations have taken a harsh toll on supply chains, with car manufacturers including Toyota and Ford already announcing issues. The mayor of Windsor says protesters will be physically removed if necessary, and has been joined by auto parts manufacturers in seeking an injunction to clear the bridge.
Meanwhile, officials in Ontario declared a state of emergency in response to the protests – sending the message that blocking crucial infrastructure is “illegal”.
Injunction hearing in recess due to overflow
The hearing to review the injunction request in Ontario has been paused because several integral parties have been unable to join the call.
The proceedings were opened to the public via Zoom and quickly reached capacity at 500 participants, blocking lawyers who were supposed to join directly.
The court is now in recess until 12.30pm as officials work to sort out the capacity issue.
Megan Sheets11 February 2022 17:21
Court to rule on injunction request
Ontario Superior Court Chief Justice Geoffrey Morawetz is slated to hear a request for an injunction to permanently end the blockade at 12pm ET.
The request is being led by the Automotive Parts Manufacturers’ Association and Canadian Vehicle Manufacturers’ Association with backing from the City of Windsor, on the north side of the Ambassador Bridge.
Judge Morawetz on Thursday issued instructions for the city to ensure that the protest organisers are aware of the hearing and know how they can tune into it.
The motion materials are available here.
Megan Sheets11 February 2022 16:55
Ontario declares state of emergency
The Ontario government declared a state of emergency in response to the two weeks of trucker protests on Friday morning.
Premier Doug Ford said the order made clear that blocking crucial infrastructure is “illegal”.
“There will be consequences, and they will be severe,” he said.
Protesters found in violation of the order could face up to a year in jail and $100,000 fines.
Megan Sheets11 February 2022 16:33
Hopes for resolution as traffic resumes on Ambassador Bridge
The opening of one lane of traffic on Ambassador Bridge came just hours before an Ontario court is slated to take up a request for an injunction to permanently end the blockade.
The injunction was put forward by auto-industry leaders and backed by the City of Windsor on the north side of the bridge that leads into Detroit.
Ontario Superior Court…