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UPDATE: This story has been changed due to a previous error identifying Peters as a rally organizer.

FORT ST. JOHN, B.C. – Fort St. John residents, as well as others throughout the country, are looking to make their voices and concerns heard about the federal COVID- 19 vaccine mandate for truckers.

Several local truckers are taking part in a rally on Sunday, supporting those heading to Ottawa in protest of the mandate.

The North Peace truck rally is slated to begin at noon on Sunday. Participants will meet along West Bypass Road.

A freedom rally took place in downtown Fort St. John Saturday to protest government vaccine mandates and passports and support medical choice.

Participant of Saturday’s rally,  Nina Peters says the whole point is to make sure residents are heard.

The federal government announced in November that all Canadian truckers looking to cross the border and avoid a 14-day quarantine period must be vaccinated. That policy came into effect on January 15th.

There was some confusion regarding the policy after a government spokesperson stated that Canadian truck drivers would be exempt from the policy. However, this announcement was redacted, with the government stating that restrictions announced in November would still apply.

In response, truck drivers across Canada will stage a cross-country convoy beginning in B.C. and ending at Parliament Hill in Ottawa to protest against federal vaccine mandates.

The convoy of truckers driving to Ottawa is set to leave B.C. on Sunday afternoon.

North Peace MLA Dan Davies says he’s concerned about how the implementation of vaccine mandates on truckers will affect the movement of goods in the province.

Davies says with the federal government bringing in the mandate for truckers crossing the border, there will be significantly fewer truckers on the road.

“That’s upwards of 16,000 truckers that won’t be able to be hauling back and forth. That concerns me on what it looks like as far as the movement of goods that we as British Colombians and people here in the North Peace really rely on,” Davies stated.

Peters says she shares Davies’ concerns over supply chains if the mandate on truckers is upheld.

“People will not vaccinate that don’t want to, and they are willing to find other means of livelihood if they have to,” Peters said.

Peters estimates over 250 residents attended the rally on Saturday.

Speakers at the rally claimed that vaccine mandates are in violation of their rights and advocated for their freedom to choose whether or not they should have to be vaccinated.

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