Cape Breton Post
Protest closes Nova Scotia-New Brunswick border
AMHERST — No traffic was entering or leaving Nova Scotia Wednesday morning as protesters blocked the Trans-Canada Highway at the border with New Brunswick.
The protest followed one Tuesday night at Thomson Station in Cumberland County that closed Highway 104 for more than five hours.
Protesters moved their blockade to the border shortly after 11 p.m. Tuesday and say there aren't leaving until Premier Iain Rankin meets with Cumberland North MLA Elizabeth Smith-McCrossin to talk about fully opening the border to New Brunswick residents without the need to isolate.
“We decided to move and continue the protest because Premier Rankin needs to know we mean business,” protest organizer Tom Everett told the SaltWire Network. “New Brunswick residents need to be able to come to Nova Scotia without isolating and vice versa. People from Nova Scotia who go to New Brunswick need to be able to come back without isolating.”
Everett understands not everyone will appreciate what they're doing but he said the message has to be sent.
“I know people will be upset that trucks aren't moving but it's something we have to do. We have to stop supply from moving to show we've had enough and mean business,” Everett said.
Everett is hoping business leaders will put pressure on both Rankin and New Brunswick Premier Blaine Higgs to remedy the situation.
RCMP are diverting traffic away from the border and parking lots in Amherst are filling with tractor trailers.
While traffic is stopped, the protesters are allowing health-care workers through as well as people going to medical appointments.
A New Brunswick driver, who asked to not be identified, said she arrived at the blockade at 11 p.m. Tuesday and spent the night sleeping in the back of her car.
“It's sad people have to resort to this to get their voices heard, and people are going to be inconvenienced, but I support people's right to protest,” she said.
Protester Shelley Farrow said the protesters want the border opened as promised.
“The talk was get your vaccine and you can travel,” she said. “We've done that and now they're saying you have to isolate when you return. I'm in Nova Scotia and I have family in New Brunswick I haven't seen in six months. What do we need to do. We've done everything we've been ask to and we have to jump through hoops. It's frustrating.”