Officials hold fake pro-freedom protest at Toronto's Pearson Airport

The return of in-person security exercises saw 300 employees and volunteers chanting for freedom.

Officials hold fake pro-freedom protest at Toronto's Pearson Airport
CBC News
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In-person exercises at Toronto's Pearson International Airport returned this weekend, the first time since COVID-19 was pandemic was declared in March 2020. Officials with the Greater Toronto Airports Authority (GTAA) staged a fake protest involving 300 individuals holding a mock “Freedom Rally” type of demonstration.

The fake protesters, a mix of airport employees and volunteers, chanted “Freedom! Freedom!” while holding signs with slogans like “Trump 2024”, “Looks like I picked the wrong week to trust the government” and “My freedoms my rights”.

Speaking to CBC, spokesperson Tori Gass told the state broadcaster that the GTAA was “testing our response to an emergency or security situation.”

“It's important that we test our response in as real life a situation as possible so that we know, when a situation like this arises, we are taking the right steps to respond,” adding that the fake freedom fighters were “very enthusiastic about playing their roles and testing our response to it.”

Delays at Pearson Airport have been a cause of concern recently, with the Globe and Mail reporting that “delays have frustrated passengers returning to the skies for the first time since the onset of the pandemic, hindered airlines’ abilities to recover lost revenue and damaged Canada’s reputation in the global travel industry.”

Deborah Flint, president and CEO of the GTAA, the Globe reported, is pushing for the government to help speed up the movement of people through Pearson's terminals by “expanding the powers of the ArriveCan travel app to eliminate lineups at kiosks, using biometrics to identify and expedite check-ins for trusted travellers, and using new technology to scan luggage without requiring the removal of laptops and other electronics.”

“You've got six-hour line-ups in your airport,” Rebel News boss Ezra Levant wrote on Twitter. “But you're putting people and money into running simulations of Canadians protesting against you because you violate our civil liberties.”

Flint's comment about the usage of biometrics appears to fit in line with goals of the Known Traveller Digital Identity, a project spearheaded by the World Economic Forum that claims to be “unlocking the potential of digital identity for secure and seamless travel.”

Pilot partners featuring prominently on the Known Traveller Digital Identity website include the Government of Canada and Pearson Airport. Other Canadian entities featured on the project's website include the Montréal–Trudeau International Airport and Air Canada.

For an in-depth look at the World Economic Forum and its agenda for a “Great Reset”, visit

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