Trucks cleared out protest against pandemic Saturday, which for days has disrupted trade between the United States and Canada. But protesters on foot continue to demonstrate despite an increased police presence.
Dozens of police officers moved into position Saturday morning near protesters on the Canadian side of the intersection. For six days, protesters have blocked the crossing at the Ambassador Bridge, which connects Detroit and Windsor.
Pickup trucks and semi-trailers rolled out Saturday morning, leaving a crowd of protesters on foot.
At noon, new protesters began to join. Their numbers grew to several hundred, despite a large police presence pushing them back.
Protesters stayed in or near their pickup trucks overnight Friday, despite warnings and a Friday order from a judge ordering an end to the blockade that has paralyzed U.S.-Canada trade through the intersection, causing the auto industry to slow down production in both countries.
Motorists have been blocking the bridge since Monday when hundreds of protesters paralyzed downtown Ottawa for two weeks.
Pandemic protests have also increased in other countries. New Zealand authorities turned on sprinklers and blew up Barry Manilow songs to drive out vaccine-mandated protesters who had been out in parliament since Tuesday.
In Paris, police fired tear gas on Saturday as a handful of protesters gathered on Champs Elysees Avenue to protest pandemic restrictions. Thousands of officers have mobilized and police stopped at least 500 vehicles trying to enter the city for protests.
Also in the news:
► NFL has not registered a positive COVID-19 case in a few weeks and hope the streak continues through Sunday’s Super Bowl.
► More than 800 students and staff at the University of Nevada, Reno, have signed a petition calls on education officials to reinstate mask mandates on campus a day after Nevada Governor Steve Sisolak lifted the state-wide requirement.
► Immunocompromised people who received the Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine and then a new shot can now get a third two months latersaid the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Friday.
📈Today’s figures: The United States has recorded more than 77.6 million confirmed COVID-19 cases and more than 918,000 deaths, according to data from Johns Hopkins University. Global totals: More than 409 million cases and over 5.8 million deaths. More than 213.5 million Americans – 64.3% – are fully vaccinated, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
📘 What we read: Mask on? Mask off? Here’s what experts say as more states lift mask mandates amid declining case numbers and pandemic fatigue. Read the full story.
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The NFL is optimistic about the Super Bowl, despite the fact that only 10% of players receive boosters
As the Super Bowl approaches, leaders in the National Football League this week expressed optimism that Sunday’s game between the Cincinnati Bengals and the Los Angeles Rams would continue without significant setbacks.
Still, Allen Sills, NFL’s Chief Medical Officer, said at a news conference Monday that it is “absolutely possible” that players can get COVID-19 and miss the Super Bowl.
“If they have symptoms and we test them and they test positive,” Sills said, “then of course they would miss the game.”
Since mid-December, the NFL has been using a revised testing model that involves testing players showing COVID-19 symptoms or self-reported problems instead of a more common, widespread system.
About 95% of NFL players are vaccinated, but only about 10% have gotten their booster shots, Sills said, mainly because of concerns about side effects.
“The rollout of boosters came at a challenging time for the players,” Sills said. “We all know that during the season, players do not want to do anything that could impair their performance or make them miss out on time.”
Parents of young children eager to get their children vaccinated will have to wait as both Pfizer and BioNTech decided to again delay the approval process for less than 5 COVID-19 vaccines.
The companies said in a statement that they want to wait until data becomes available on a third dose of vaccine, probably in early April. They had originally said that such data would become available in late March or early April, and they would ask for permission thereafter.
But under pressure from the Food and Drug Administration, the companies submitted their data and requested permission for the first two doses, saying they could add a third in the future.
Friday’s news appears to be reversing and returning to their former position.
An FDA advisory committee was scheduled for Tuesday to consider the request, but it has been canceled. No new date has been set.
– Karen Weintraub, USA TODAY
The Danish Veterinary and Food Administration on Friday granted emergency use permit for a new monoclonal antibody from drug giant Eli Lilly, a day after the Biden administration purchased 600,000 doses to address the diminished treatment options for COVID-19.
The new monoclonal antibody, called bebtelovimab, will be sent out to states free of charge, according to Health and Human Secretary Xavier Becerra. “We will try to be there to meet the demand,” he said.
The government’s proposal comes after two leading monoclonal antibody treatments were found to be ineffective against the omicron variantwhich now accounts for almost all COVID-19 cases in the United States. Data indicate that the Lilly drug works against omicron, including the new BA.2 mutation.
Starring: Jarrett Bell, USA TODAY; Christine MacDonald and John Wisely, Detroit Free Press; Associated Press