Given the news that the “Freedom Convoy” is planning to cause a gridlock on February 11, the province has added measures to the Emergency Measures Act.
Emergency Measures Act updated
The new measures included in the Act forbid:
- Stopping or parking any item in a way that contributes to blocking the traffic
- Organizing, Financing and/or participating in traffic interruptions
- Helping people to block the traffic by delivering supplies
- Stopping or gathering along the side of a crowded highway
Premier Blaine Higgs defended the measures by stating that “…people have the right to protest, but we have to take the safety of all New Brunswickers into consideration.”
The fine for violating the measures can range from $3,000 to $10,000 for a person and from $20,000 to $100,000 for corporations. Driving privileges can also be temporarily revoked for up to 12 months as punishment.
Freedom Convoy protest planned in Fredericton
The measures were put in place just before the “Freedom Convoy” protest that is scheduled to take place on Friday afternoon.
The Fredericton Police Force has expressed that it will not allow a traffic jam caused by the convoy and they will respond if an irresponsible protest takes place. “Trucks, heavy equipment, anything meant to impede the city…will be turned away at the checkpoints at the exterior of the city,” said Roger Brown, the Fredericton Police Force Chief.
“Freedom Convoy” protests have been taking the stand against vaccine mandates and other COVID-19 safety measures, causing mass disruptions across the country, including causing the city of Ottawa to declare a state of emergency.
Update from UNB Fredericton
On Thursday, February 10, UNB Fredericton announced on social media that they would be closing the campus for in-person classes on February 11 after 11:30 a.m., with alternate delivery classes remaining in place. Any staff is allowed to leave the campus after that time if they are concerned about safe travel.