All Quebec to be at green COVID-19 alert level on Monday
MONTREAL — The entire province will be in the green pandemic-alert level next week — the lowest level in Quebec’s colour-coded COVID-19 response plan — Premier François Legault said Tuesday.
Eight of the province’s outlying regions are already green and will be joined on Monday by the province’s bigger cities, including Montreal, Quebec City and Laval.
Under green zone rules, up to 10 people from three different households can gather indoors and up to 20 people can gather in backyards. For restaurants and bars, up to 10 people can be seated at a table indoors and up to 20 people are allowed at each outside table. Maximum capacity at weddings and funerals will also increase next week.
“Monday, we’ll go from small parties to medium parties,” Legault told reporters, adding that outdoor team sports will resume as well. “The second dose will be our big mission for the summer.”
As of Friday, Legault said outdoor festivals across the province can welcome up to 3,500 people, adding that festival attendees who are fully vaccinated will not have to wear masks around each other.
One-fifth of the province’s population is considered fully vaccinated, according to the latest data. The province’s public health institute said Tuesday about 80.4 per cent of Quebecers 12 and up have received at least one dose of vaccine while 20 per cent have received both doses.
People in the 18-to-39 age bracket, however, lag behind the rest of the province regarding first doses. “We still have work to do to reach our vaccine target for those under 40,” Legault said. “I ask you to get vaccinated as soon as possible, especially those in Montreal and Laval.”
Quebec health officials said discussions are ongoing with the federal government over the definition of who is “fully vaccinated.” In Quebec, someone who has recovered from COVID-19 and has had one dose of a two-dose vaccine is considered adequately vaccinated.
The federal government, however, says only people who have received two vaccine doses can forgo the two-week quarantine requirement for travellers when Ottawa relaxes the rules on July 5.
Dr. Horacio Arruda, Quebec’s public health director, said the province will offer a second dose in the meantime to people who have had COVID-19 and only one shot and who want to travel. “In the context of those wanting to travel soon and absolutely needing a second dose, it won’t be refused to them,” Arruda said.
“My advice is if you’re not travelling right away, you can wait until decisions are taken at the international level,” Arruda said.
Quebec on Tuesday posted fewer than 100 new daily cases for the second consecutive day, reporting 84 new infections and four more deaths attributed to the novel coronavirus. Health authorities said hospitalizations dropped by seven, to 161, and 40 patients were in intensive care, a rise of one. There are 1,225 active reported cases in the province.
This report by The Canadian Press was first published June 22, 2021.
Sidhartha Banerjee, The Canadian Press