What truckers at this London, Ont., stop think of their industry's vaccine mandate

Hundreds of truckers are expected to form a so-called "Freedom Convoy," traveling cross-country in protest of the COVID-19 vaccine mandate. They'll be stopping at the Flying J truck stop in London this Thursday.

CBC News spoke to three truck drivers at the Flying J truck stop

Trucks at Flying J truck stop in London, Ont. (James Chaarani/CBC)

Truckers forming a so-called "Freedom Convoy," are traveling cross-country in protest of the COVID-19 vaccine mandate, and will be stopping at the Flying J truck stop in London this Thursday.

Truck drivers hauling their freight back onto Canadian soil now need to prove their vaccination status or adhere to a 14-day quarantine, as part of a federal rule that came into effect Jan. 15. 

Hundreds of truckers headed to Ottawa in 'Freedom Rally' convoy against vaccine mandate

According to the Canadian Trucking Alliance and the American Trucking Associations, about 26,000 of the 160,000 drivers regularly cross between the Canada-U.S. border could be affected, raising concerns about supply chain disruptions.

CBC News visited London's Flying J truck stop to find out what these truck drivers think. .

Harmeet Dhamoon 

Getting vaccinated made sense for Harmeet Dhamoon. (James Chaarani/CBC London)

A truck driver for three years, Dhamoon crosses into the U.S. once a week. He's fully vaccinated and recently got his booster shot. 

He's observed that things down south are much different than in Canada when it comes to masking and mandates. Being vaccinated against COVID-19 was a logical choice for him. 

"It's all open [in the U.S.]," he said. "We, as Canadians, have to come back to our home." 

"I just want to bring the good freight, good things, not the bad things," he said. 

Despite that, he believes that getting vaccinated is an "individual choice." 

Truck driver on mandatory border vaccination rules

5 months ago
Duration 0:29
Truck driver Harmeet Dhamoon made a stop at the Flying J in London, Ont. on Jan. 24, 2022.

Andrew Marr

Andrew Marr thinks that the vaccine mandate is "fair." (James Chaarani/CBC)

Marr has been on the road for 32 years and said that he works in "48 states and 10 provinces."

He's had all three COVID-19 jabs, and sees the mandate as "fair." 

"They've known for almost two years that we were going to have to go through this sometime or another," he said. 

Marr considers the battle against COVID-19 to be a collective effort. 

"If drivers have that much pride and want to sit home, then so be it … We'll get the job done. If we have to hire more drivers, fine," he said, but does see this potentially leading to serious supply chain issues.

Harman Singh

Singh has been in the business for four years and crosses the U.S. border for work every other day. He supports the mandate. 

The cross-country convoy will be making a stop at the Flying J in London, Ont. on Thursday. (James Chaarani/CBC)

"If you are vaccinated, you are good to cross," he said. "I am vaccinated. I have my two shots, so I don't have an issue with that." 

"If you want to work, right? There's a government regulation. So, if they made it, it's for the betterment of everyone."