May 28, 2023

The Queens County Citizen

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Emergency Commission State | A senior police officer said the emergency law was unnecessary

Emergency Commission State |  A senior police officer said the emergency law was unnecessary

(OTTAWA) Police forces were successful in removing a “freedom convoy” without new emergency powers granted by the federal government, the person in charge of the Ottawa Police, Provincial Police (OPP) and Integrated Planning Division said. Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP).

Posted at 5:01 pm.

Mylene Crete

Mylene Crete

Police forces already have powers to seize or tow vehicles, OPP Chief Superintendent Carson Pardee said during testimony to the commission on the state of emergency. “So we don’t need it Emergency Measures Act “, he said.

A public hearing chaired by Judge Paul Roulau is to determine whether the federal government is right to use the law for the first time in its history to end blockades of the “freedom convoy” border crossings in Ottawa and elsewhere in the country. .

Hundreds of trucks from all over the country brought the federal capital city center to a standstill for three weeks in January and February. They demanded the lifting of provincial health measures against COVID-19 and the lifting of the federal government’s vaccination obligation on truckers crossing the Canada-US border.

Photo by Sarah Monge-Birkett, Law Press Archives

Pardee said the Ontario Ministry of Transportation helped police locate the tow trucks. One of the problems the city of Ottawa and its police department faced early on was that all the towing companies approached refused because they feared for the safety of their employees or supported the convoy of trucks.

The planning section of the massive police operation that ended the demonstration had much to discuss about the new powers granted by the declaration of a national emergency on 14 February. Among them, requesting tow trucks. These powers are included in the developing plan.

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“It helped, I wouldn’t say the opposite,” the chief superintendent agreed.

“In my humble opinion, we would have reached the same solution with the plan without these two pieces of legislation,” he said, referring to the emergency declarations made by the Ontario government and the federal government.

In cross-examination, he admitted Emergency Measures Act It made it possible to remove some resistances. According to an email exchange presented by a federal government lawyer, the Ontario Ministry of Transportation was only able to obtain ten tow trucks from the two companies. The federal government said the emergency declaration was a “reasonable and necessary decision”.