Quebec sets curfew, bans indoor restaurant dining to help curb Omicron spread
By Colleen Cross
Quebec City – A curfew and the closing of indoor restaurant dining are among recent health measures Quebec has put in place to help curb the growth in transmission of the Omicron variant.
The measures came into force on Dec. 31, 2021.
Premier Legault appealed to all workers in the health network who have left to come back and lend a hand in the days ahead, noting the number of confirmed positive cases continues to rise and a very worrisome increase in hospitalizations has been observed in the past few days.
Temporary measures have been put in place to avoid further aggravating the situation in the hospitals and to limit scaling back. The following measures are being added to those already in force:
A curfew will be in force from 10 p.m. to 5 a.m. Quebecers will be prohibited from leaving their homes except in cases that justify travel, such as to obtain healthcare, for humanitarian reasons, or to engage in priority work. Anyone travelling during this period may have to justify such travel in relation to the allowable exceptions. Offenders will be subject to penalties ranging from $1 000 to $6 000.
- Private indoor gatherings must be limited to the occupants of the same residence.
- Certain exceptions may apply: a visitor providing a service or offering support;
a single individual (with his or her children, if applicable) can join a family bubble.
- Face-to-face instruction in elementary and secondary schools has been postponed throughout Québec until January 17, 2022.
- If possible, online learning will continue until face-to-face instruction resumes.
School childcare services remain open for the children of essential workers.
- The date on which face-to-face instruction resumes in postsecondary institutions will be determined later.
Places of worship
Places of worship are closed, except for funerals, which must be limited to 25 people.
Outdoor events are still authorized but must be limited to 250 people.
Dining rooms are closed. Delivery and takeout are still possible.
Commercial enterprises are closed on Sunday, except for certain businesses such as convenience stores, gas stations and drugstores.
- Indoor sports are suspended, except for one person alone, two people (in pairs), or the occupants of the same residence.
- The indoor facilities of downhill skiing centres and snowmobile centres are open solely to allow people to warm up and to use the toilet facilities. Food consumption in the centres is prohibited, although food services can offer takeout.
The ongoing situation and the impact of the measures will be closely monitored. If necessary, specific additional measures for individuals who are inadequately protected, who account for a sizable proportion of current hospitalizations, may be announced.