Three Quebec cities to enter special lockouts, with four regions reversed in red zones

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Three Quebec cities to enter special lockouts, with four regions reversed in red zones


MONTREAL – Quebec Premier François Legault announced on Wednesday that four regions, after recently easing their restrictions on COVID-19, will see this decision reversed, while three cities will have what amounts to a shelter order on square.
“It’s like we have to put populations in intensive care right now – otherwise we’re going to lose them,” Legault said at a press conference to announce the changes.

The Outaouais, Quebec City, Chaudière-Appalaches and Bas-St-Laurent regions will all switch from orange to red zones under the province’s warning system as of Thursday at 8 p.m., Legault said.

The three cities – Quebec, Lévis and Gatineau – are showing such alarming signs that the province is locking them up for 10 days, with schools and all non-essential businesses closed. The children will follow a distance learning full time.

This lockdown will also begin at 8 p.m. on Thursday and will last until April 12.

“In general, what we are saying is that the situation is critical, that it is deteriorating, in these three cities,” said Legault.

“People basically have to stay at home, unless they absolutely have to go to work. ”

The curfew in these three cities will also return to 8 p.m. after being set at 9:30 a.m. in all orange and red zones.

Theaters, gymnasiums and many other businesses will close and the sale of non-essentials will be banned. Restaurants will be allowed to take out and deliver only. The places of worship will have a capacity of 25 people.

It’s more or less the same system that was in place in January, explained Legault.

Three of these regions only went to a more relaxed orange level than on March 8, while the Outaouais has been orange since mid-February.

OTTAWA RESIDENTS MUST NOT VISIT GATINEAU

Quebec’s director of public health, Dr Horacio Arruda, also warned Ottawa residents against crossing the river to visit Gatineau, saying it was dangerous and should only be done for urgent reasons. .

If you have to go, be careful about wearing a mask, he said.

“It is strongly, strongly, strongly recommended that you do not go to these areas because there is public transmission,” Arruda said.

Health Minister Christian Dubé also reiterated what Legault said on Tuesday – that the province is in contact with the mayor of Gatineau and the government of Ontario to try to harmonize regulations in Ottawa and Gatineau.

“We will find a way to make sure there is less [interchange] “Between the two regions,” Dubé said.

The province is taking action now to try to head off a dire future in a few weeks time when the current trend of COVID-19 cases hits hospitals, Legault said.

On Tuesday, a fifth region was designated as very worrying, Saguenay-Lac-St-Jean, but Legault said it was now considered in better shape.

MONTREAL STABLE FOR NOW, BUT THINGS ARE CHANGING QUICKLY

Montreal will not see its current rules changed at this time, Legault said, as it is relatively stable.

Overall, however, the situation is changing rapidly as the province grapples with the spread of variants, and Montreal may also need to backtrack to tighter restrictions, he later said.

He made the comment while defending himself against an accusation that the province had been back and forth between restrictions, which Legault had said he wanted to avoid.

“We are no different from anywhere else,” he said, highlighting how French President Emmanuel Macron also recently changed the restrictions.

“Everyone is in a situation where we adapt,” he said. “If we hadn’t wanted to take the risk, we would have closed more in Montreal, and we would have made a mistake, because… we were able to give Montrealers a bit of a break,” he said. .

“But are we going to have to act next week in the greater Montreal area? Perhaps. ”

Arruda said he is watching closely the upcoming holiday weekend to see if it changes Montreal’s course.

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