In an effort to slow the spread of COVID-19, the Quebec government imposed an overnight curfew and closed most businesses for a month.
Prime Minister Franois LeCold said the drastic measures he described as “trauma treatment” would begin on Saturday. Many of them will be in place for four weeks until February 8th.
“The coming month will be an important month,” Legalt told a news conference Wednesday. “We’re racing against time.”
“Unfortunately we have lost this race for the last few weeks, but we can win it.”
The activities are as follows:
A provincial curfew order from 8pm to 5am
Fines for violating the curfew can range from $ 1,000 to 6 6,000.
Non-essential businesses will be closed, but curbside mining will be allowed.
Restaurants, gyms and theaters will remain closed.
All non-essential workplaces will be closed.
Elementary schools will open as scheduled on January 11, but 5th and 6th grade children will have to wear masks.
High schools will reopen on January 18 and close for another week.
Day care is open.
Grocery stores and tiffinies will close at 7:30 p.m.
These measures do not apply to the autonomous northern region of Nunavut and the James Bay region.
Production and construction will not be closed, unlike in the spring when it is locked. But the Prime Minister asked them to focus on work and materials that are considered “essential”.
According to the most recent government data, more than a quarter of COVID-19 eruptions were identified in the province’s workplace in the manufacturing sector in the week ending December 19th.
Those outbreaks were linked to 1,336 of the total 3,367 infections that week.
Dr. Horacio Aruda, Quebec Director of Public Health, said most of these explosions occurred in the food industry, which is essential and cannot be closed.
The Prime Minister was reluctant to introduce drastic measures despite the growing concern Health professionals, He said he wants to protect families and the economy.
But the rising number of daily cases and the number of hospitalizations prompted the government to change course.
“As prime minister, I am responsible for the safety of Quebecs,” Legalt said.
“I have to make tough decisions. There are not a thousand solutions, there are no perfect solutions. It is urgent to reduce the contacts of Quebecs.”
New restrictions were imposed on Christmas breaks, schools and all non-essential businesses until January 11.
Legalt said Wednesday that these measures were not enough to reduce the spread of the virus and that long prison terms were necessary.
As part of the announcement, Quebec also revealed an updated, promising vaccination deadline.
The province expects to vaccinate 250,000 people by early February, as LeCault plans to remove some of the locking measures.
They include residents of long-term care homes and more than half the health workers in the province.
By mid-February, Quebec expects to start vaccinating the general population over the age of 80.