Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s announcement invoking the Emergency Act to take control and break up the several week long protest in Ottawa has been met with reactionary fervor from both the protestors and Canada’s government. Protesters claim that the Emergency Act will be met with even more resilience than before.
The Freedom Convoy, a large group of truckers protesting vaccine mandates and several other Covid-19 restrictions, has entered Ottawa and remained stationary since. The protesters have congested several parts of the city in order to get their point across. Trudeau has told a news conference that "it is now clear that there are serious challenges to law enforcement's ability to effectively enforce the law."
According to aljazeera.com, “Trudeau said he was invoking the Emergencies Act, which allows the federal government to take “special temporary measures” for a period of 30 days during national emergencies.”
Many have opposed the Prime Minister’s decisions, since it would be unprecedented and even authoritarian to make such a decision. To understand what the Emergency Act is and which cases justify its usage, one should know the definition. The Emergency Act should only be invoked when a situation “seriously endangers the lives, health or safety of Canadians and is of such proportions or nature as to exceed the capacity or authority of a province to deal with it” or that “seriously threatens the ability of the Government of Canada to preserve the sovereignty, security and territorial integrity of Canada”.
Trudeau has yet to meet with the truckers, instead he has been using various legal and political tactics to force the truckers to stop, offering no compromise.
The truckers have received a lot of support from fellow Canadians, as well as thousands of people from countries all around the world. A Freedom Convoy GoFundMe was started by supporters of the truckers and generated over $9 million, however the site canceled the fundraiser. GoFundMe announced that they would not refund the money to supporters, instead they felt like they should distribute the money to certified charities of their choice. They later realized how paramount of a mistake that was, so they refunded the money to the recipients.
This has not stopped the supporters from donating their money, however. People have been using bitcoin transactions to fund the protests, which has generated a lot of support for cryptocurrencies.