Quebec Premier François Legault called on Quebecers to honour a “moral contract” for the holiday season to reduce the spread of COVID-19 and lessen the stress on the province’s health care system.
Legault was joined at Thursday’s press conference by Health Minister Christian Dubé, Education Minister Jean-François Roberge and Public Health Director Dr. Horacio Arruda.
The government will allow a maximum of 10 people from any number of households at Christmas gatherings Dec. 24, 25, 26 and 27, and the moral contract is that they confine themselves at home a week before those dates, and a week after. The Premier asked employers to allow employees to work from home. The gathering allowance does not apply to the Jewish holiday of Hanukkah or New Year’s Eve or Day.
The Premier is also generally reminding Quebecers to respect the usual precautions during these gatherings — respect the two metre distance and wash hands regularly.
Legault also announced, apologizing while doing so, that restaurants, movie theatres, gyms and other venues in Quebec’s “red zones,” including the entire Montreal area, would continue to be closed until Jan. 11.
As well, Legault announced that schools will be closed Dec. 17, but asked that online learning continue until Dec. 22. School will resume the first week of January for the elementary sector — the date depends on the region; and for high schools, distance learning continues until Jan. 11.
“All efforts that we can deploy as of today will increase our chances that we will have gatherings around Christmas time,” Legault said.
As well, “we are working very hard on the vaccination campaign. Although the war is not over, we can see the light at the end of the tunnel.”