Video posted online by Ontario police officer supporting 'Freedom Rally' being looked into
A video posted on social media by an Ontario police officer, who says she feels people are at war for their freedoms, is being looked into by a regional police force.
Durham Regional Police said Monday they are aware of a video posted by Constable Erin Howard, where in uniform she shares her support for people who are protesting against vaccine mandates for truck drivers crossing the Canada-U.S. border.
The protest has been dubbed the "Freedom Rally," and is a series of coordinated gatherings of truck drivers who are against the vaccine mandate.
The convoy of truck drivers left B.C. on Sunday and will travel east, stopping in major cities, including Toronto, Windsor, Kingston and Ottawa.
“Right now, it feels like we’re at war and those rights and freedoms are at stake,” Howard said in the video. “You guys are honestly true heroes, what you are doing is incredible.”
Howard said she is part of a group called “Police On Guard” that is suing to stop the enforcement of COVID-19 measures. She said she will be speaking at an event in Ottawa on the weekend when the truck drivers arrive.
Durham police Constable George Tudos told CTV News Toronto on Monday the video does not depict the views of the police force.
“We were made aware of a video that’s circulating on social media depicting one of our officers,” Tudos said.
Tudos said Durham police’s code of conduct restricts the use of police property and influence to only official duties, and that doesn’t include making private political statements.
Durham Regional Police Constable Erin Howard is shown in this still image taken from a social media video.
It’s not necessarily the content of Howard’s video that could be a violation of the rules, Tudos said, but the fact it was recorded while she was in uniform.
CTV News Toronto attempted to contact Howard but did not receive a response.
Most of Canada’s 160,000 truck drivers are vaccinated, but an estimated 12,000 are not. The drivers in the convoy argue that the vaccine mandate could disrupt the food supply chain.
The Canadian Trucking Alliance is distancing themselves from the protest, saying the industry must adapt because the rules won’t change.
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