Cancel your New Year’s plans. Quebec’s curfew is back. Prime Minister François Legault made the announcement during a press conference Thusday.
As of Friday December 31, non-registered Quebecers a list of exemptions must be at home from 10 p.m. to 5 a.m.
The last curfew lasted more than four months, from January 9 to May 28, 2021. This curfew initially extended even to homeless Quebecers until a superior court judge ordered a few weeks later. a new exemption for the homeless population, claiming the rule was “discriminatory and disproportionate” on them.
On Thursday, the prime minister said the measure is “extreme because the situation is extreme”. He explained that the government believes it would be impossible for the police to enforce a curfew that only applies to the unvaccinated.
Fines for breaking the curfew, he said, could range from $ 1,000 to $ 6,000.
Quebec reported 14,188 new COVID-19 infections on December 30, breaking the barrier of 14,000 daily cases for the first time and breaking a record set just 24 hours earlier, when the province reported 13,149 new cases. This record itself was only one day old.
A total of 939 active hospitalizations were reported on December 30, a net increase of 135 from the previous day.
The province has already unleashed a sometimes dizzying flurry of new health measures in recent weeks. Bars, gyms and many places have been closed since December 20. On December 26, Quebec reduced the number of people allowed to assemble indoors on private property from 10 to six. Earlier this month, authorities canceled a plan to increase that number to 20 for the holidays.
The rapid succession of new rule announcements shows how quickly the COVID-19 situation has evolved. As recently as December 16, Prime Minister Legault said that while he would not rule out a new curfew entirely, it was not among the measures being considered immediately.
On December 22, six days later, officials reportedly discussed the nightly restrictions on travel outside the home.
This is a developing story. Check back for more details.
The cover image for this article is used for illustration purposes only.