Three Quebec cities go into lockdown

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Three Quebec cities are going into special lockdown, four regions reverse to red zone.

Three Quebec cities – Quebec City, Lévis, and Gatineau – are going on a 10-day lockdown. Schools and also all non-essential businesses will close, with students switching to full-time remote learning. Moreover, four regions will reverse to the red zone after alarming rates of COVID-19 cases. Previously, Quebec had eased restrictions, but worries about rising infection rates put authorities on a check.

The new 10-day lockdown will last from Thursday at 8 p.m. to April 12. Quebec Premier François Legault stated that the situation is worrying. “Generally speaking, what we’re saying is that the situation is critical in those three cities,” he said. He also remarked that people should remain at home except if they ‘absolutely’ must work.

Meanwhile, health officials are warning Canadian citizens not to visit those regions. “It’s highly, highly, highly recommended not to go to those zones because there’s public transmission,” said Quebec Public Health Director Dr. Horacio Arruda. Quebec is one of the provinces that took the coronavirus pandemic harder than most. In a recent study, officials underlined how Quebecois women were especially faring worse than men in Quebec because of restrictions.

Nonetheless, Quebecois citizens need to understand the gravity of the situation. Also on alarm is Montreal, which is still relatively stable. But circumstances could change fast, and lockdown could extend to Montreal soon. Legault even quoted French President Macron, saying that “we are no different from anywhere else”. Macron has himself announced tightening restrictions and a new lockdown in France after rising cases.

Dr. Arruda stated authorities would oversee Montreal across the upcoming holidays. Cases in Canada are approaching the million, with Ontario reporting today over 2,557 new cases for the first time in months. Ontario authorities have nonetheless confirmed schools will, for now, remain open.