Quebec will continue to loosen restrictions as the province Monday when the whole province moves into the green pandemic alert as new cases of COVID-19 continue to drop and vaccinations levels continue to rise across the province, Premier Francois Legault announced at a press conference last Tuesday.
“We can go from little parties to big ones,” Legault said. “We’ve reached our objectives.”
Legault’s mood was jovial – and with good cause. In a tweet sent out before the press conference, the premier got his big news out of the way in advance of conference.
"Quebec's situation continues to improve," he tweeted. "We are exactly where we thought we were with our vaccination plan and our deconfinement plan. As of Monday, all of Quebec is moving to the green level!"
After 16 months of monitoring the pandemic and its varying alert levels, the premier announced that fully vaccinated individuals may gather in private homes as of Monday.
In addition, a maximum of 10 people can gather indoors, and 20 people outdoors. At restaurants and bars, staff can now seat 10 people at an indoor table, and 20 people can sit together on outdoor terrasses. Indoor sports are allowed with a maximum of 25 players and 25 spectators and outdoor sports are allowed with a maximum of 50 players and 50 spectators.
For weddings, capacity is limited to 50 for outdoor events and 25 for indoor events.
Legault said he was excited about Quebec having hit 80-per-cent of eligible recipients have gotten at least one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine, but that there was still some room for improvement amongst younger Quebecers.
"We've reached our objectives, but we have some objectives to meet in certain groups," said Legault, adding Quebecers under 40 remain “an area of concern.”
Mere minutes after Legault’s press conference, Montreal public health officials held what they hoped would be their last press conference of the summer.
Montreal recorded 324 new COVID-19 cases over the past week, an average of 46 per day.
Montreal public health director Mylene Drouin said the vaccination campaign and an increase in outdoor activities have helped curb the spread of the virus.
“Montreal is in an excellent position, and all of our indicators continue to improve,” Drouin said. “There will be new easing of measures, so of course we'll be able to take advantage, to see our friends and loved ones, to take up activities that we had left aside, and take advantage of the summer.”
Marc Lalonde, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, Iori:wase