Municipal councillor punished for convoy participation

The trucker and West Lincoln council member is under fire from the integrity commissioner after receiving coffee and breakfast sandwiches during Ottawa’s Freedom Convoy.

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Harold Jonker attended the Freedom Convoy as a concerned citizen, worried father, and upset business owner. Due to the fact that he is also an elected municipal council member in West Lincoln, he has faced backlash for his participation and leadership in the convoy.

Jonker’s business just so happens to be a trucking company. He’s one of the owner/operators of Jonker Trucking, a family business started by his father in 1993. He says that he and his wife had concerns early on in the pandemic, when certain employees were deemed “essential” while others were forced out of work.

He is now being vilified for the act of protesting against an unprecedented and unscientific government response to a virus. A complaint was launched against Jonker to the integrity commissioner after council voted against investigating him. The investigation, carried out by Toronto law firm Aird & Berlis LLP, found that Jonker was in breach of two sections of the Code of Conduct.

Originally, council voted not to investigate Jonker for his participation in the convoy, but that was disregarded by the anonymous complaint filed against him to the OIC.

Jonker needs to account for all of the items he received throughout his participation in the Freedom Convoy which includes a pair of underwear, socks, breakfast sandwich(es), cans of V8, coffee, and fuel. He estimates the amount would total less than $300.

His council pay has been renumerated for 30 days and he must donate the equivalent of what he received in donations to the West Lincoln Community Care Centre.

In response to this, the community of West Lincoln has taken it upon themselves to inundate the West Lincoln Care Centre with donations, of which they’re actively collecting.

Jonker expresses that the only thing he regrets is “not being able to stay connected with people who desperately needed connection.”

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