Quebec to impose 8 p.m. province-wide curfew, manufacturing sector stays open
The provincial government won’t close factories or order work sites to stop operating, but factories are being asked to postpone “non-essential” manufacturing.
As COVID-19 infections and related hospitalizations continue to rise in Quebec, premier Francois Legault has announced a province-wide 8 p.m. curfew for the next four weeks – the first such lockdown in Canada – but the manufacturing and construction sectors will remain open as “essential” services.
As reported by The Canadian Press and other outlets, the premier said all non-essential businesses that he ordered closed in December will remain closed until at least Feb. 8, when the curfew is scheduled to be lifted. The curfew begins on Jan. 9, and will be from 8 p.m. to 5 a.m. Anyone caught breaking the rules is liable to a fine between $1,000 and $6,000, although the government is considering creating a document for people who have to be out after the curfew, which they can show police.
While some health experts have called for the Quebec government to shut down the manufacturing and construction sectors, Legault said the government won’t close factories or order work sites to stop operating. Factories, he said, have been asked to postpone “non-essential” manufacturing. The type of production that will be designated “essential” will be decided, he said, following discussions between manufacturers and government officials. “Teleworking is mandatory when possible and shifts must be adjusted to limit the staff present at any time on production and construction sites,” the Quebec provincial government said in a statement.