A vocal but peaceful group of unmasked protesters rallied at Creekside Park in Fruitvale last week.
According to Trail and Greater District RCMP, on Apr. 23 around noon, they received a report of an organized outdoor event, and observed a female speaker using a microphone to talk to an allegedly unmasked crowd of approximately 40 people.
The anti-vaxxer rally was reportedly planned for the Pole Yard on Main St., but because it is private property the protesters set up at the popular village park.
Anti-vaxxer refers to people, largely in the minority, who disagree with the use of vaccines for a variety of reasons, but mainly that they infringe on their human rights.
A small group of protesters also carried signs that read “Corona Dictatorship Wake Up”, “COVID vaccine is an illegal experiment on the global population,” and “Churches are essential”.
“With recent surges in COVID-19 infections in Canada, the Trail RCMP is asking the public to continue following social distancing rules and refrain from gathering, as well as following all other enacted laws under the Emergency Programs Act,” said RCMP Sgt. Mike Wicentowich in a release.
The crowd began slowly dispersing after the arrival of Trail RCMP.
The police are continuing to investigate a 60-year-old Trail man and 53-year-old woman for allegedly organizing the event.
Trail RCMP would like to remind the public that anyone attending such an event could be issued a $230 fine for attending a non-compliant event under Section 4(4) of the Emergency Program Act.
Other fines under the EPA also could apply.
“Trail and Greater District community wants to prevent our local hospital from becoming overwhelmed with new cases, which will help ensure anyone can get medical treatment and care if required.
“Gatherings like this one can lead to the accelerated spread of COVID-19 through contact and close contact,” added Sgt. Wicentowich.