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A few weeks ago, my wife and I honked and waved to show our support as a group of truckers from our own hometown in northern British Columbia made their way to join the convoy and their effort to restore freedom to Canadian truckers.

What started off as truckers protesting the Justin Trudeau cross-border vaccine mandates grew into a much larger peaceful cross-country convoy who made their way across the country to bring Canadians a message, a message of hope. As my colleague Pierre Poilievre said in a recent visit he made to one of the many overpasses where Canadians stood waving as the convoy proudly drove by, “This is for all that is great and it attracts hundreds of thousands of people from around the world to come here for our freedom. Freedom not Fear. Truckers not Trudeau.”

We have heard the Prime Minister call the truckers names and talk about the impact this protest has had on the downtown core of Ottawa and the businesses, and there certainly have been impacts. But what about the impacts felt by each trucker and the community they come from? The Prime Minister, instead of speaking with the truckers, hearing what they have to say and attempting to unite Canadians, chose instead to further stoke the fires of division.

When I arrived in Ottawa on January 30th I didn’t witness the same things portrayed in the national media. I did witness regular, polite, festive and proud Canadians simply wanting their freedoms restored. I saw friendly fellow Canadians waving Canadian flags, shoveling snow and picking up garbage. Hardly what the media is portraying.

I had the privilege to meet with several folks from NEBC. Bern Bueckert and Andy Dreidger from Fort St. John as well as Kim Bramhill and Darren Mitchell from Fort Nelson. As Bern stated, I hope it’s a start of a new chapter for our country. We have seen so much hope on so many faces and realized that everybody wants a change and so many are tired of where we are at. People have that hope again. It’s time to reopen our businesses, start freeing our kids, start spending time with our friends and neighbours again. It means everything. I hope it’s the start of something amazing. I have fallen in love with Canada again.

I am headed back to Ottawa to continue to work on what Canadians want and need. Our new leader, Candice Bergen said it so well last week, “Canadians want and need a peaceful resolution to this impasse. To the Prime Minister: I’m asking him to provide a clear plan to end the situation in Ottawa. Let’s work together to find solutions… Now, we must come together, as Canadians always do and chart a peaceful way forward.”

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