Pro-pipeline supporters arrived in a convoy from Alberta and other parts of the country for the second day to protest against the Liberal government on Parliament Hill in Ottawa on Feb 20.
Errol McGihon / Postmedia Network
The United We Roll! convoy brought protesters from Alberta and elsewhere to Ottawa where they rallied at parliament for more pipelines and against the current carbon tax format and the UN’s migration agreements Feb. 19 and 20.Cathy Monteath, a convoy organizer and participant from Peace River, left with her husband and 17-month-old daughter on Feb. 13 to join the other trucks before they departed from Red Deer on Feb. 14.“The response [was] fantastic and we ain’t over yet,” Monteath said. “All in all, it gained awareness. It was great for Canada. The unity that came along with it was my most valued thing when it comes down to it.”Around 180 vehicles left Red Deer to participate in the convoy. Although two people from the Grande Prairie-area later joined up, Monteath was the only driver to leave Peace River. She had previously expected up to 15 others.“We did lose a lot of people but we knew that was going to happen along the way,” she said. “I just didn’t figure it would happen 24 hours before we drove on the highway.”Monteath received donations of fuel, food and other items from various supporters to help her undertake the road trip to Ottawa. She also streamed live videos on the @PeaceRiverConvoy Facebook page in order to raise awareness.One of Monteath’s videos drew online outrage when her daughter was shown not strapped into her car seat. She noted that her truck had only been going between 60 and 70 kilometres per hour.“The convoy really never, ever reached top speeds,” Monteath said. “Yes, I was wrong, absolutely, to have my child out of the car seat. But, in the grand scheme of things, there isn’t one person in Canadian history that I know of that has spent their whole time in a car seat on a family trip.”There were further controversies that hit the cross-country convoy. United We Roll! began after head organizer Glen Carritt left the now-defunct yellow vest convoy due to infighting over differing philosophies. Carritt has been criticized for allegedly not distributing money from his GoFundMe page to reimburse the trip expenses of Ottawa convoy members. As of Sunday afternoon, the page now sits at $141,510. Carritt wrote in an update that he has a bookkeeper for all records and a chartered accountant would review the ledger.“I haven’t received a darn cent,” Monteath said. “That’s something that’s going to happen between me and Glen Carritt.”“In all honesty, I was shocked — plain and simple,” she added. “I stood up for people not getting fuel, not having hotel rooms paid when the GoFundMe account was sitting around $40,000 and I was pushed out.”Monteath said she was disappointed further when she reached Ottawa and discovered that protesting was limited due to issues with permits.“I drove 4,600 kilometres to stand on a hill for eight hours,” she said. “That was not what I thought it was going to be. The original movement that started it was to be 24/7 five days a week.”Despite the challenges, Monteath said she managed to get her message across.“My trip was successful in getting awareness and Canadians to unite and know that we stand for. That’s what my trip was successful for,” she said. “As far as standing on a hill and having Mr. Trudeau come out, that never happened.”A second convoy to Ottawa is scheduled for July.“There really wasn’t much clarity in who’ll follow through all the way along,” Monteath said. “There needs to be more planning and better communication when we do the next one here in July.”