Emergencies Act inquiry to hear how protesters affected those living and working in Ottawa


The public inquiry inspecting the federal authorities’s use of the Emergencies Act will hear later this morning how the protesters who took over Ottawa streets final winter affected those who reside and work in the capital.

Ottawa-based lawyer Victoria De La Ronde and Zexi Li — an Ottawa resident who helped safe an injunction towards Freedom Convoy protesters to silence their incessant honking — will testify when the Public Order Emergency Commission resumes for the day on the Library and Archives constructing in Ottawa.

The inquiry is reviewing the circumstances that led up to the federal government’s determination on Feb. 14 to invoke the Emergencies Act for the primary time in the act’s 34-year-old historical past. The laws requires {that a} public inquiry be held after it’s invoked.

Zexi Li, 21, was given the mayor’s metropolis builder award earlier this 12 months for her function in serving to silence trucker horns throughout the three-week occupation. (Giacomo Panico/CBC)

Two downtown Ottawa enterprise associations may also have the prospect to weigh in on the impacts of the protests. Both Nathalie Carrier, govt director of the Vanier BIA, and Kevin McHale, govt director of the Sparks Street BIA, will take questions.

The day will wrap with two downtown Ottawa metropolis councillors — Catherine McKenney and Mathieu Fleury — providing their takes on how the scenario was dealt with.

McKenney is in the midst of a mayoral marketing campaign, whereas Fleury just isn’t re-offering in the upcoming municipal election. 

On Thursday, lawyer Paul Champ, who’s representing a coalition of enterprise and group teams in Ottawa, advised Ontario Court of Appeal Justice Paul Rouleau, who’s main the inquiry, that folks in town are nonetheless “traumatized.”

“They’re bewildered, they’re upset, and I can say, commissioner, these 30 days that you’ve, we might have residents line up daily to testify, to inform you their tales,” he stated throughout his opening remarks.

Keith Wilson, a lawyer representing a few of the convoy protest’s organizers, downplayed the affect on native companies whereas talking to reporters Wednesday.

A resident holds an indication in direction of protesters as they take part in a counter protest to cease automobiles from driving in a convoy en route to Parliament Hill in Ottawa on Sunday, Feb. 13, 2022. ( Justin Tang/The Canadian Press)

“This notion that these companies have been so badly harmed is being overstated,” he stated.

“And to the extent that they have been harmed, it wasn’t due to the protests, it was as a result of [of] the federal government taking the weird step of telling so a lot of them to shut when there was no good motive for them to shut.”

The fee resumes at 9:30 a.m. ET. CBC News will carry it reside.

This story can be up to date all through the day.


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