Court Documents Reveal Canada’s Travel Ban Had No Scientific Basis

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau. Image via Wikimedia Commons

In Brief

  • The Facts:
    • Newly-unsealed court documents reveal that Justin Trudeau’s government had no scientific basis for a ban on travel by unvaccinated Canadians on trains and planes.

    • Both plaintiffs, Karl Harrison and Shaun Rickard are business owners with family overseas.

    • They sued the Canadian government over the travel ban.

  • Reflect On:
    • These newly released documents begs the question, does information still play a role in changing our minds at this point when it comes to Covid?

    • It seems facts don't matter in many scenarios, so if that is the case, can we ever expect things to be different?

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Newly-unsealed court documents have revealed that the Prime Minister of Canada, Justin Trudeau, and his government had no scientific basis for banning the unvaccinated from travelling.

The travel ban was announced by the Canadian government on August 13, 2021, which prevented the unvaccinated from travelling on planes and trains. This decision snowballed into the world of employment, with many people losing their jobs as a result of their vaccination status.

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According to the documents, Jennifer Little, head of the “Covid Recovery Unit” of Transport Canada, claimed that a senior official in Trudeau’s Cabinet had ordered them to impose the ban. The announcement in Canada, and other similar measures across the globe, were met with harsh criticisms from renowned academics and health experts.

These criticisms were silenced, and went virtually unheard of within the mainstream while they presented a one sided, black and white narrative of the pandemic and health policy. Meanwhile, officials in the Covid Recovery Unit had little to no formal education or training in epidemiology, medicine, or public health.

The documents, brought to light by Rupa Subramanya, reveal the following,

  • No one in the COVID Recovery unit, including Jennifer Little, the director-general, had any formal education in epidemiology, medicine or public health.
  • Little, who has an undergraduate degree in literature from the University of Toronto, testified that there were 20 people in the unit. When Presvelos asked her whether anyone in the unit had any professional experience in public health, she said there was one person, Monique St.-Laurent. According to St.-Laurent’s LinkedIn profile, she appears to be a civil servant who briefly worked for the Public Health Agency of Canada. St.-Laurent is not a doctor, Little said.(Reached on the phone, St.-Laurent confirmed that she was a member of COVID Recovery. She referred all other questions to a government spokesperson.) 
  • Little suggested that a senior official in the prime minister’s Cabinet or possibly the prime minister himself had ordered COVID Recovery to impose the travel mandate. (During cross-examination, Little told Presvelos repeatedly that “discussions” about the mandate had taken place at “senior” and “very senior” levels.) But she refused to say who had given her team the order to impose the travel mandate. “I’m not at liberty to disclose anything that is subject to cabinet confidence,” she said. 
  • The term “cabinet confidence” is noteworthy because it refers to the prime minister’s Cabinet. Meaning that Little could not talk about who had directed the COVID Recovery unit to impose the travel mandate because someone at the very highest levels of government was apparently behind it.
  • In the days leading up to the implementation of the travel mandate, transportation officials were frantically looking for a rationale for it. They came up short.

Both plaintiffs, Karl Harrison and Shaun Rickard are business owners. Both have family in Britain. Both have refused the vaccine on the grounds of bodily autonomy. Both were reluctant to identify their businesses out of fear of losing customers.  In the fall of 2021, Rickard launched a GoFundMe to do battle with his government. In November, Harrison, who had learned of Rickard on social media, reached out to him. In December, they jointly filed the suit.

The fact that these court documents indicate that the science was not followed is not a surprise. In fact, even without this story it became utterly obvious that politics, not science, was the force guiding the governments pandemic response. Forced vaccination was portrayed as something one could do to protect others, despite the fact that they do and did not stop the transmission of the virus. Despite the fact that outbreaks were still happening in heavily vaccinated populations, politicians still claimed it was a “pandemic of the unvaccinated.”

When science calling into question these policies did happen to emerge, censorship occurred. In the United States for example, emails show Anthony Fauci and his boss at the US National Institutes of Health (NIH) wanted to conduct a “quick and devastating” take-down of health experts who proposed a lockdown-free COVID control strategy.

But the experts kept pushing, and have been pushing throughout this pandemic to let the public know that Covid policy has not been about science or the protection of the public. For example, several researchers from various academic institutions in the United Kingdom, United States and Canada published a paper  in February titled, “The Unintended Consequences of COVID-19 Vaccine Policy: Why Mandates, Passports, and Segregated Lockdowns may cause more Harm than Good.”

 The researchers did an excellent job in pointing out misleading messages that have been disseminated to the public during the Covid vaccination policy, a propaganda campaign by legacy media and political rhetoric. The paper explains how these policies have been counterproductive, unsuccessful and harmful in several ways. There are hundreds of papers now published echoing the same sentiment with regards to vaccine, mask and lockdown policy.

“Political rhetoric has descended into moralizing, scapegoating, blaming and condescending language using pejorative terms and actively promoting stigma and discrimination as tools to increase vaccination.”

The Unintended Consequences of COVID-19 Vaccine Policy: Why Mandates, Passports, and Segregated Lockdowns may cause more Harm than Good.

Epidemiologist Tracy Beth Høeg, M.D., Ph.D and researcher Marty Makary, M.D., M.P.H. have published a paper that includes anonymous testimonies from CDC officials about the lack of science taking place at the CDC when it comes to COVID-19.

In the words of Bruce Pardy, a law professor at Queen’s University,

“The Trudeau government has claimed to follow the science on Covid, but that science is strangely different than it is everywhere else. Instead, its policies are based on spite, divisiveness, and pure politics. Covid now serves as an excuse to punish the government’s ideological enemies.”

Court Documents Reveal Canada’s Travel Ban Had No Scientific Basis. Rupa Subramanya

Despite all of this, propaganda is extremely powerful. Governments and legacy media constantly ridiculed and pointed the finger at those who chose to not comply with mandatory vaccination policy. Justin Trudeau even referred to the unvaccinated as a racist group of misogynistic extremists, despite the fact that some of the most renowned experts in the field were opposed to vaccine mandates. In fact, the majority of Canadians, by February, were completely opposing all Covid restrictions. For example, the Angus Reid Institute conducted a poll in February showing that the majority (54%) of Canadians wanted all Covid restrictions to end.

What occurred during this pandemic is one of the greatest examples of how propaganda can be used to sway the collective mind. It’s almost as if science was completely thrown out the window during the pandemic, and political rhetoric took over. What does this say about our ability to look in to and evaluate information? What does this say about our ability to search for answers, ask appropriate questions and really question what our governments claim instead of just blindly believing what we are told?

Why would the Canadian Government spend over $39 million to black out and process freedom of information requests pertaining to all things Covid over the last two years?

These newly released documents begs the question, does information still play a role in changing our minds at this point when it comes to Covid? It seems facts don’t matter in many scenarios, so if that is the case, can we ever expect things to be different?

The video below features The Pulse founder, Joe Martino, Dr. Madhava Setty and David Helfrich. Madhava is a physician who has been actively engaged in examining and reporting on Covid related literature since the onset of the pandemic, and David is a lawyer who has been curiously reflecting on the nature of Covid restrictions and their effect on rights, as well as much of Covid literature in general.

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