And just like that, the honkening may be coming to an end - as Alberta Premier Jason Kenney announced on Tuesday that he's ending the province's vaccine passport system.
According to the Toronto Star, a spokesperson said:
On Tuesday, Health Minister Jason Kenney announced a plan to phase eliminate the province's current public health restrictions, starting with the Restrictions Exemption Program (REP).
According to Kenney, "this is the right moment to start learning to live with COVID."
Restrictions imposed by the government have led to "terrible divisiveness."
To maintain a constant state of crisis is not an option.
We must start the healing process."
As part of his plan to relax public health regulations, Kenney outlined a three-stage process.
It is expected that practically all restrictions on children, including the kindergarten to grade 12 mask rule, would be lifted by the weekend.
In addition, children under the age of 12 in Alberta will be exempt from the general mask requirement.
For the remainder of the populace, the general mandate remains in effect.
Kenney stated, "It is time to let kids be kids."
It's not clear if the province can progress to Stage 2, where "almost all the remaining restrictions are lifted," including the mask mandate, capacity limits and work-from-home orders.
By March 1, Kenny hopes this can be done.
If Covid puts too much of a strain on the healthcare system, the last stage would see all limitations released.
Public health constraints no longer outweigh the threat of COVID-19 to public health, according to Kenney, who added, "We are well positioned to live with the virus."
But Ezra Lavant of Rebel News says Kenney is "The QR codes will remain with him.
And he'll let other organizations, including private firms, use QR codes to make discriminatory decisions."
The declaration is a major departure from Justin Trudeau, who was evidently disturbed by it.
Protesters have been blocking the Ambassador Bridge between Windsor, Ontario, and Detroit for more than 48 hours. New warnings say the auto sector may grind to a halt this week.
According to Robert Wildeboer, the executive chairman of Martinrea International Inc., "basically, if there is a closure of transportation lines, the car industry grinds to a screaming halt in roughly two days."
Vaughan, Ontario-based Martinrea is a prominent car components producer.
In Detroit, it produces engine blocks and gearbox cases as well as chassis components and body panels for automobile firms..
According to Wildeboer, "38 trucks cross the Detroit-Sarnia border every day, and 16 in Sarnia."
This may be a problem for Martinrea since protesters have shut down the border crossing there.
There has been no reaction to the disruption in Toronto stock trading for Martinrea yet.
The Canadian Vehicle Manufacturers' Association's Brian Kingston told Bloomberg that closing the bridge would be "catastrophic" for the country's economy.
Canada's most important border crossing with the United States is the US-Canada border crossing at LaGuardia Airport.
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