Meet the truckers: The men and women of the Freedom Convoy 2022

the latest tech news, global tech news daily, tech news today, startups, usa tech, asia tech, china tech, eu tech, global tech, in-depth electronics reviews, 24h tech news, 24h tech news, top mobile apps, tech news daily, gaming hardware, big tech news, useful technology tips, expert interviews, reporting on the business of technology, venture capital funding, programing language

The National Post spoke to truck drivers and supporters as they were driving to Ottawa for this weekend’s “Freedom Convoy 2022” to protest vaccine mandates. Here is what they told us about their jobs, their frustrations with government measures during the pandemic, and the rule that could kill their livelihoods.

Meet the truckers: The men and women of the Freedom Convoy 2022
© Provided by National Post Claudia Winterhalter, a truck driver on her way to Ottawa as part of the convoy. Credit: Rachel Parent/National Post
Meet the truckers: The men and women of the Freedom Convoy 2022
Slawek Pietraszek is a 43-year-old trucker on his way to Ottawa in the convoy. Credit: Rachel Parent/National Post

Slawek Pietraszek

the latest tech news, global tech news daily, tech news today, startups, usa tech, asia tech, china tech, eu tech, global tech, in-depth electronics reviews, 24h tech news, 24h tech news, top mobile apps, tech news daily, gaming hardware, big tech news, useful technology tips, expert interviews, reporting on the business of technology, venture capital funding, programing language

Slawek Pietraszek was born in Poland. After moving here in 1991, he spent the rest of his childhood in Brampton, Ont., where he still resides with his wife and four children. The 43-year-old trucker travelled approximately 30 kilometres to participate in a convoy launch in Vaughan, Ont., that will ultimately lead him to Ottawa, where he plans to stay as long as he needs to until a resolution can be reached. Pietraszek, who did not want to disclose his vaccination status, says he is motivated by his family and the birth of his fourth child this week. He hopes to leave a better future to them and that governments will agree to repeal all vaccine mandates. “My fourth child was born this past Saturday; I’ve decided I need to do this for my family,” he said. — Rachel Parent, National Post

Meet the truckers: The men and women of the Freedom Convoy 2022
Corey Bayne a truck driver at the Vaughan convoy takeoff to show his support. Credit: Rachel Parent/National Post

Corey Bayne

Global Tech News Daily

Growing up in Newfoundland, much of Corey Bayne’s family background and upbringing was surrounded by trucking. At age 18, he moved to Ontario, where he got his trucking licence and became a driver by age 19. The 44-year-old now lives in Georgetown, Ont., where he travelled from to attend the Vaughan convoy launch. While he can’t make it to Ottawa because he is working, he took a day off to show support and solidarity with the truckers that will be making the trip. “It’s exciting that everyone is getting together as one group,” he said. Bayne got vaccinated to keep his job, but says he understands and supports the opposition to the mandates. He hopes all vaccine mandates will be repealed. — Rachel Parent, National Post

Meet the truckers: The men and women of the Freedom Convoy 2022
Dave Ridell and his wife before leaving for Ottawa with the convoy. Credit: Rachel Parent/National Post

Dave Ridell

Global Tech News Daily

As a third-generation farmer in Alliston, Ont., Dave Ridell has been transporting his grains through trucking for the last 30 to 40 years. He travelled approximately 60 kms to participate in the convoy launch in Vaughan, and will be going all the way to Ottawa. The 59-year-old is concerned that government overreach has gotten out of hand, and that politicians need to be held more accountable for what they are doing and the impact vaccine mandates are having on people. He also said that truckers, being frontline workers, were once considered heroes along with health-care workers and other industries, but the mandate on truckers pushes aside many who worked through the harder moments. Ridell, who didn’t want to disclose his vaccination status, hopes that the convoy to Ottawa will lead to all vaccine mandates being lifted. “The amount of people who are unemployed because it’s their personal choice whether they want to be vaccinated or not, it’s not fair, just totally unfair,” he said. — Rachel Parent, National Post

Meet the truckers: The men and women of the Freedom Convoy 2022
James Smockum (right) a truck driver for the film industry at the convoy takeoff event in Vaughan. Credit: Rachel Parent/National Post

James Smockum

Growing up on a farm, James Smockum drove trucks from a young age, and as soon as he turned 19, he got his trucking licence. He knew he wanted to become a truck driver after watching Smoky and the Bandit. “I watched it 1,000 times growing up, pretty well from the first time I watched that, I figured that’s what I want to do when I got older,” he said. He was a trucker on the road for most of his life and now primarily does transport for the film industry. The 42-year-old said that while his job hasn’t been impacted yet, there are sets that are starting to mandate vaccination and he has fewer options. He’s planning to go up to Ottawa on the weekend to be a part of the events there. “My hope for this is that people see that there’s this many people against what’s going on,” he said. “Most people see the mainstream narrative that everyone is vaccinated and anyone who’s not vaccinated is a horrible person, which is not the truth at all.” — Rachel Parent, National Post

Meet the truckers: The men and women of the Freedom Convoy 2022
© Provided by National Post Claudia Winterhalter, a truck driver on her way to Ottawa as part of the convoy. Credit: Rachel Parent/National Post

Claudia Winterhalter

Claudia Winterhalter lived in West Germany when the country was divided, and says she saw the impact of totalitarianism on East Germany. Growing up, she watched her dad work as a bus driver and wanted to follow in his footsteps. To qualify for driving a bus, you first have to drive a truck in Germany, she said, so she began her career in trucking in 1996. After she married a Canadian truck driver, she continued her career in Canada. The 54-year-old from Orangeville, Ont., has not been vaccinated, but is not against the vaccine. Most of her family and children have gotten it. She believes it is a personal choice. She says much of what is happening reminds her of what she grew up witnessing, with food shortages, political unrest and government overreach. She said even if the convoy doesn’t achieve its goal to reverse all mandates, she hopes they can reinforce that they are all taxpayers and deserve the same freedoms. “I find it’s sad that people are losing their jobs because they have to get vaccinated,” she said. “This is not what Canada is all about, it’s your choice.” — Rachel Parent, National Post

  • What the truckers want (and why Ottawa can’t give it to them)
  • ‘City’s going to get gridlocked’: How the truck convoy could wreak havoc on Ottawa streets

Meet the truckers: The men and women of the Freedom Convoy 2022
DeAndre Mahadeo, a 35-year-old trucker from Barrie, before the convoy begins. Credit: Rachel Parent/National Post

DeAndre Mahadeo

DeAndre Mahadeo is a 35-year-old trucker from Barrie, Ont. His father, also a trucker, inspired him to the career. He has been trucking for 12 years now. He says he feels overjoyed by the number of people that have been supporting them. He’s hopeful they can make a change when they reach Ottawa. Being unvaccinated, the mandate for cross-border truckers that went into effect on Jan. 15 has impacted him. He hasn’t been able to do cross-border work and could be out of a job should it not be reversed. He said he’ll be staying in Ottawa until a resolution is reached and that this is about reversing the mandate and putting a spotlight on Prime Minister Justin Trudeau. “I’m hoping that they’ll listen to us,” he said. “I’m hoping that they’ll consider what we are saying.” — Rachel Parent, National Post

Meet the truckers: The men and women of the Freedom Convoy 2022
Matt Raynor pictured in his truck on the way to Ottawa. Photo provided by Matt Rayner.

Matt Rayner

Matt Rayner of Tyne Valley, Prince Edward Island, has been trucking since he was old enough to obtain his Class 1 driving licence. Following in the footsteps of his father and grandfather, both truckers, the 30-year-old Rayner has worked all over the country including Alberta, the Canadian Arctic, and Baffin Island in Nunavut. After eight years, Rayner had to make the hard decision to retire from trucking. The mandatory COVID isolation period when he returned to P.E.I. became a burden. He said he got sick of working away from home then not being able to spend time with his family when he returned. Rayner now works as a tattoo artist, which allows him to be home with his two daughters. “If it wasn’t for COVID, I’d still be doing it,” he said about trucking. With a backseat full of food to share with other drivers, Rayner set out on a 13-hour drive from P.E.I. to Ottawa, but he is not alone. Last year, Rayner’s father passed away from a heart attack. He brought his ashes along with him on the trip to Ottawa in memory of the hours they used to spend travelling together. Rayner, who did not disclose if he is vaccinated, said he wants to see “mandates dropped, especially isolation for truckers.” He said he worries about his kids who have to wear masks at school and can’t go to birthday parties. “I can’t go here and there, but everybody can go to Walmart,” he said. “It makes absolutely no sense.” — Jessica Mundie, National Post

Meet the truckers: The men and women of the Freedom Convoy 2022
Lola Parsons (left) and Jennifer Whiteway pose with Monty the dog at a pitstop in Aulac, New Brunswick, on their way to Ottawa. Photo provided by Lola Parsons.

Lola Parsons

On Tuesday morning at 7 a.m., Lola Parsons began the 31-hour drive from St. John’s, Newfoundland, to Ottawa. Her journey has been filled with “crying and laughing,” she said, as she travels with her friends, and their dog Monty in the East Coast Convoy towards the nation’s capital. Parson, who is 54-years-old, is one of the team leads for this group of drivers. She is not a truck driver, but she joined the convoy because she agrees with its mission. She has been posting photos and video updates on her Facebook page of the convoy’s journey, alerting those travelling in front and behind her of their whereabouts and letting supporters know where to meet to cheer them on. Parsons said she has witnessed overwhelming support throughout the drive. When leaving Fredericton, New Brunswick, on Thursday, she said there were so many people lining the highway and overpass the police instructed the convoy to pull off the ramp to get back on the highway. “That will tell you what kind of movement is happening in Eastern Canada right now,” she said. For Parsons, this drive is a “journey to freedom.” Parsons, who did not disclose if she is vaccinated, said she wants to see an end to the vaccine mandates and “unnecessary” restrictions. “This is no small fringe movement,” she said. “These are real people who live in Canada.” — Jessica Mundie, National Post

Meet the truckers: The men and women of the Freedom Convoy 2022
© National Post “Everybody’s coming together, based on one common goal.” says Sophia. Credit: Rachel Parent/National Post

Sophia

Sophia, who asked that her last name not be published to protect her privacy, grew up in a family of truckers. Some of her earliest memories are of riding in her father’s truck. She’s been a licensed truck driver for over seven years and says trucking was somewhat of a calling for her. After going to post-secondary school, and trying various professions, including in the health-care industry, she decided that transport felt like the right fit. The Toronto woman’s vaccination status is undisclosed, and she says that is exactly the point. She said the trucker convoy is a movement, not a protest, and it’s not about anyone’s vaccination status, but instead about freedom and the basic human right to choose. Her motivation to join the convoy in Ottawa falls on the fact that she has young kids and doesn’t want to see them struggle with COVID restrictions in the education system. Truckers are the backbone of the economy, she said. From food to gas to clothing, everything comes from a trucker. “I find that a lot of people now are speaking out saying, you know, it’s white supremacy coming out, and this a racist movement. But it’s people of colour. It’s also a unity that’s coming out,” said Sophia, who includes that she is Trini-Afghan Canadian on signs supporting the Freedom Convoy. “Everybody’s coming together, based on one common goal.” — Rachel Parent, National Post

News Related

OTHER NEWS

New York Rangers get another comeback win to force Game 7 vs. Pittsburgh Penguins

PITTSBURGH — How many times can the New York Rangers dig themselves into a hole and climb back out? At least one more, as of Friday night. The Blueshirts came ... Read more »

Wilson, balanced Aces cruise to 96-73 victory over Dream

COLLEGE PARK, Ga. (AP) — A’ja Wilson scored 15 points, Kelsey Plum had 14 points and 11 assists and the Las Vegas Aces rolled to a 96-73 victory over the ... Read more »

EXPLAINER: Why frustration lingers in Okinawa 50 years later

The Associated PressFILE – U.S. Marine Corps Sgt. Mike Anglen of Turner, Ore., center, stands atop a cliff as Sgt. Bryan Wallace of Pikin, Ill., waits for his turn before ... Read more »

Astros beat Nationals 6-1 for 11th straight victory

WASHINGTON (AP) — Jose Altuve homered on the first pitch of the game, Yordan Alvarez and Yuli Gurriel also went deep and the Houston Astros extended their winning streak to ... Read more »

Kreider scores late, Rangers edge Pens 5-3 to force Game 7

PITTSBURGH (AP) — Chris Kreider’s long slap shot bounced over Louis Domingue and into the net with 1:28 left and the New York Rangers beat the Pittsburgh Penguins 5-3 on ... Read more »

Astros push winning streak to 11, roll past Nationals 6-1

WASHINGTON (AP) — Jose Altuve homered on the first pitch of the game, and Yordan Alvarez and Yuli Gurriel also went deep to help the Houston Astros extend their winning ... Read more »

Moustakas, Drury power Reds to 8-2 victory over Pirates

PITTSBURGH (AP) — Mike Moustakas homered twice and Brandon Drury drove in four runs to break out of a slump and lead the resurgent Cincinnati Reds to an 8-2 victory ... Read more »

Peterson's bases-loaded walk lifts Brewers over Marlins 2-1

MIAMI (AP) — Jace Peterson walked against Anthony Bender with the bases loaded in the ninth inning and the Milwaukee Brewers beat the Miami Marlins 2-1 Friday night. After starters ... Read more »

Padres: No cancer found during manager Bob Melvin's prostate surgery

SAN DIEGO (AP) — The San Diego Padres say no cancer was found when manager Bob Melvin had prostate surgery on Wednesday. Melvin, 60, was recovering at home Friday after ... Read more »

Ogunbowale, Gray help Wings rally past Mystics, 94-86

WASHINGTON (AP) — Arike Ogunbowale scored 27 points, Allisha Gray had 21 and the Dallas Wings overcame a 15-point second-quarter deficit to beat the Washington Mystics 94-86 on Friday night. ... Read more »

Resigning North Dakota senator led lawmakers in travel costs

The Associated PressFILE – North Dakota Sen. Ray Holmberg listens during a joint House and Senate Appropriations Committee meeting at the Capitol in Bismarck, N.D., on Jan. 7, 2009. Holmberg, ... Read more »

Residents in picturesque California county hit with gas prices topping $7 a gallon

A California county known for its spectacular mountains and proximity to Yosemite National Park has been paying the nation’s highest gas prices. Read more »

Boudreau to return as coach of Canucks next season

VANCOUVER, British Columbia (AP) — Bruce Boudreau will return as coach of the Vancouver Canucks next season after helping to turn the struggling NHL club around as a midyear replacement. ... Read more »

New Zealand leader Jacinda Ardern tests positive for COVID

On Location: May 13, 2022 Catch up on the developing stories making headlines.The Associated Press WELLINGTON, New Zealand — New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has tested positive for COVID-19 ... Read more »

Today in History for May 14th

Highlights of this day in history: Colonists go ashore in Virginia to set up Jamestown; Lewis and Clark begin to explore Louisiana Territory; Israel founded; Skylab launched; Movie producer George ... Read more »

Twitter CEO expects Elon Musk acquisition to close, addresses spending cuts

Musk is awaiting details supporting calculations that spam, fake accounts represent less than 5% of Twitter's users Read more »

Padres: No cancer found during Bob Melvin's prostate surgery

SAN DIEGO (AP) — The San Diego Padres say no cancer was found when manager Bob Melvin had prostate surgery on Wednesday. Melvin, 60, was recovering at home Friday after ... Read more »

Renovated NYC museum shows indigenous perspectives

The American Museum of Natural History in New York City recently finished a major renovation of its exhibition on the native peoples of the northwest coast of North America. Curators ... Read more »

Police release 911 calls in Gilgo Beach case

A woman who disappeared in a beach community on New York’s Long Island more than a decade ago, sparking an investigation into a possible serial killer, said “there’s somebody after ... Read more »

Academy Awards set 2023 Oscars for March 12

The Associated PressFILE – Oscar statue on the red carpet at the Oscars on Sunday, March 27, 2022, at the Dolby Theatre in Los Angeles. Next year’s Academy Awards will ... Read more »

Actor Fred Ward, of 'Tremors,' 'The Right Stuff' fame, dies

The Associated PressFILE – Fred Ward, a cast member in “30 Minutes or Less,” poses at the premiere of the film in Los Angeles on Aug. 8, 2011. Ward, a ... Read more »

Judge refuses to drop elections suit against Trump, media

NEW YORK — A Colorado judge on Friday denied motions to dismiss a defamation lawsuit filed by an election systems worker against former President Donald Trump’s campaign, two of its ... Read more »

Q&A: Becky G unveils every side of herself in latest album

The Associated PressFILE – Becky G appears at the Oscars in Los Angeles on March 27, 2022. Beck G’s latest album is “Esquemas.” (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong, File) NEW YORK ... Read more »

North Korea reports 21 new deaths as it battles COVID-19 outbreak

SEOUL, South Korea — North Korea reports 21 new deaths as it battles COVID-19 outbreak. Read more »

North Korea confirms 21 new deaths as it battles COVID-19

SEOUL, South Korea — North Korea says 21 people died and 174,440 people were newly found with fever symptoms on Friday alone as the country scrambles to slow the spread ... Read more »

White Sox place Giolito on COVID list, activate Vaughn

The Chicago White Sox placed ace Lucas Giolito on the COVID-19 injured list and activated outfielder Andrew Vaughn following a rehab assignment with Triple-A Charlotte on Friday. Giolito began experiencing ... Read more »

Traded back and forth, Ford learns to live out of suitcase

NEW YORK (AP) — Mike Ford has learned to travel light — and quickly. Since the start of the season, the 29-year-old first baseman has played for Tacoma, San Francisco ... Read more »

Falcon 9 rocket launches Starlink satellites

A SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket launched 53 Starlink satellites to low-Earth orbit from California on Friday. (May 13) Read more »

Celtics' Robert Williams remains out for Game 6 vs. Bucks

MILWAUKEE (AP) — Boston forward/center Robert Williams missed his third straight game with an injured left knee as the Celtics tried to keep their season alive Friday night in Game ... Read more »

Padres sign Robinson Canó, plan to use him off the bench

ATLANTA (AP) — The San Diego Padres have signed veteran second baseman Robinson Canó to a major league contract and plan to use him as a left-handed bat off the ... Read more »

WNBA star's Russia detention extended by 1 month

The lawyer for WNBA star Brittney Griner says her pre-trial detention in Russia has been extended by one month. Alexander Boykov told The Associated Press the relatively short extension indicated ... Read more »

Louisiana justices toss COVID-related charges against pastor

Hundreds of thousands of Americans fighting long-haul symptoms from COVID-19 Dr. David Putrino from Mount Sinai Health System and COVID long-hauler Joel Fram discuss the long-term effects of the disease.The ... Read more »

Sandy Hook lawsuits against Alex Jones on track to resume

The Associated PressFILE – This Tuesday, Dec. 11, 2018, photo shows radio show host and conspiracy theorist Alex Jones at Capitol Hill in Washington. The Sandy Hook families’ lawsuits against ... Read more »

Rockies' Bryant closer to return after cortisone shot

DENVER (AP) — Colorado Rockies outfielder Kris Bryant took swings in the cage Friday for the first time since he was sidelined with a sore back nearly three weeks ago ... Read more »

Mariners demote Jarred Kelenic to minors after poor start

NEW YORK (AP) — Rather than make his Citi Field debut against the team that traded him, Jarred Kelenic was demoted to Triple-A Tacoma by the Seattle Mariners on Friday ... Read more »

Biden: ASEAN partnership 'critical' in this moment

Looking to strengthen ties, President Joe Biden welcomes leaders from the Association of Southeast Asian Nations to Washington for the first time. “We’re launching a new era in U.S.-ASEAN relations,” ... Read more »

Phil Mickelson will not defend his title at next week's PGA Championship

Phil Mickelson caught lightning in a bottle last year at Kiawah Island, winning a major championship at 50 years of age. The fairways flooded, and the golf world stood and ... Read more »

Tennessee Titans' Malik Willis on Ryan Tannehill's mentorship comments: 'Everything is cool'

The Tennessee Titans didn’t take issue with Ryan Tannehill’s comments about mentoring third-round rookie Malik Willis. Willis and coach Mike Vrabel were asked about Tannehill’s scrutinized remarks following the first ... Read more »

Lawyers plan suit against Lufthansa over Jewish passengers

Lawyers for 26 passengers said Friday they told Lufthansa that they will sue the German airline for refusing to let members of a large group of Orthodox Jewish passengers board ... Read more »

Wild face offseason after yet another early ouster

While the Minnesota Wild were stacking up franchise records and securing the extra home game for the first round, general manager Bill Guerin carefully acknowledged a “great year” for the ... Read more »