Face covering


 30 June 2020

Wearing a face covering, also known as a homemade mask, will be mandatory on public transit from July 13, 2020 for people age 12 and over. This obligation applies to buses, the subway, ferries, taxis, car services, etc. Children under 12 years of age, people whose particular medical condition prevents them from wearing a mask and people who are unable to put on or take off a mask by themselves do not have to wear a face covering on public transit. However, for children between 2 and 12 years of age, wearing a face covering or mask is recommended.

In other public places where physical distancing of 2 metres is not possible, such as at the grocery store or in shops, wearing a face covering is strongly recommended.

When you wear a mask or a face covering in public, you must also follow other safety measures, such as hygiene. For more information, see the Health recommendations for everyone section.

If you’re sick, stay home. If you have to go to a clinic or a hospital, wear a procedure mask or, if you don’t have one, your face covering until you are given one when you arrive.

Anyone who goes to a health care facility, such as a hospital, a clinic, a doctor’s office or a family medicine group, should wear a procedure mask or a face covering. This recommendation applies to both the patient and the person who is with them. When the person arrives, the staff may ask them to wear a procedure mask.

Children under age 2, anyone who has trouble breathing or is unable to remove their mask or their face covering without assistance should not wear it.

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Back-to-school plan for education and higher education


 18 June 2020

Preschool, elementary school and Secondary I, II and III
All students in preschool, elementary school and Secondary I, II and III will attend class full-time, in compliance with the standard ratios. Classes will be organized into subgroups of no more than six students. This will allow students to spend time together and work within these subgroups without distancing constraints. The physical distancing rule of one metre between the various subgroups of students is maintained. The physical distancing rule of two metres between students and staff must also be respected.

Teachers will move between classrooms based on the subject being taught, and students will remain in the same classroom. For students in Secondary I, II and III, the schedules for courses and special projects will be reorganized based on the principle of closed groups.

Secondary IV and V

For students in Secondary IV and V, school service centres are provided with two options based on their realities and the needs identified in their respective school communities.

The first option is based on the model used for students in Secondary I, II and III, who are attending school full-time. It consists in reorganizing the schedule for optional courses and special projects based on the principle of closed groups.

The second option is an alternating schedule. Under this option, the current rules of physical distancing are maintained and students attend school at least every second day. Online learning and work to be done at home will round out the educational services offered.

Adult general education and vocational training
For adult general education and vocational training, the plan is for students and adult learners to return to class in person, especially for practical activities and examinations. Physical distancing between students and teachers must be maintained at all times, except in programs where it is impossible to do so. In that case, students and teachers must use personal protective equipment.

Emergency protocol
In order to be ready for any eventuality, school service centres must be equipped with an emergency protocol before the return to school in the fall. This protocol must allow them to switch rapidly to distance learning should the situation call for it.

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New task force to fight racism


 17 June 2020

With the goal of taking concrete action to fight racism in our society, the Gouvernement du Québec has created the Groupe d’action contre le racisme (GACR).

The mandate of this task force is to develop a series of effective actions to fight against racism, particularly by identifying which sectors have high-priority needs for measures in this area (public security, justice, school systems, housing, employment, etc.). These measures will have to take into account the specific realities experienced by persons from visible minorities and Indigenous communities.

Recommendations are to be submitted in the fall of 2020, so that lasting changes may be made as soon as possible.

The task force is co-chaired by Lionel Carmant, Minister for Health and Social Services, and by Nadine Girault, Minister of International Relations and La Francophonie. Apart from the co-chairs, it will include the following members:

  • Sylvie D’Amours, Minister Responsible for Indigenous Affairs;
  • Denis Lamothe, MNA for Ungava and Parliamentary Assistant to the Minister Responsible for Indigenous Affairs;
  • Ian Lafrenière, MNA for Vachon and Parliamentary Assistant to the Minister of Public Security;
  • Christopher Skeete, MNA for Sainte-Rose and Parliamentary Assistant to the Premier for Relations with English-Speaking Quebecers;
  • Isabelle Lecours, MNA for Lotbinière-Frontenac.
  • Various experts and organizations active in the fight against racism will be consulted by the GACR.

To contact the Groupe d’action contre le racisme, individuals and organizations may write to GACR@mce.gouv.qc.ca.

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Reopening of commercial enterprises and shopping centers


 12 June 2020

June 15 – Throughout Québec : opening of commercila enterprises that offer services directly to the public and to businesses (travel agencies, shoe-repair shops, etc.)

June 19 – CMM and MRC of Joliette : opening of shopping centers :

  • The regulations governing the hours and days of admission to commercial establishments must be observed
  • The use of masks or face covers is strongly recommended
  • Service counters in restaurants can open for takeout service only
  • Tables and rest areas not accessible bu customers until June 22.

For more information, click here.

$750M to bolster tourism


 12 June 2020

Since June 1, 2020, marinas and certain categories of tourist accommodation establishments can resume their operations under certain conditions.

NewIn addition, starting from June 19, 2020, Quebecers will be able to enjoy tourism activities in the following sectors:

  • zoos;
  • gardens;
  • visits to artisanal processors and agro-tourism farms;
  • tourist welcome and information centres.

Maritime excursions will also be able to resume their activities starting from July 1, 2020.

For more information on the resumption of these different activities, please visit the questions and answers page or the Tourism industry support page (in French only).

Click here to read more.

Get your annual card to unlimited access to all Québec national parks.

Full standardization of the school tax on July 1 2020


 12 June 2020

To afford individuals and businesses greater financial flexibility during the COVID-19 pandemic, the government is moving ahead to July 1, 2020 the reduction of the single school tax rate.

The government had already announced in Budget 2020-2021 an additional reduction of nearly $182 million in the tax burden of property owners that attained two-thirds of the anticipated reduction. The addition of nearly $173 million is enabling the government to announce today full standardization this year.

Accordingly, property owners will benefit from a $355-million reduction in their tax burden for 2020-2021.

The school tax rate applicable to Québec for the period from July 2020 to June 2021 will thus be set at $0.1054 per $100 of standardized property assessment.

All told, the reductions announced last year and this year represent an annual saving of $622 million for taxpayers.

“This acceleration in the reduction of the school tax rate is an effective way to afford Quebecers financial flexibility when they need it the most. We are fulfilling our commitment to eliminate injustice between the regions by standardizing the school tax rate to the lowest rate in Québec. Lastly, it should be noted that the reduction of the school tax rate has no impact on funding for the education network.”, says Eric Girard, Minister of Finance.

Click here to read more.

Restaurants to Reopen


 12 June 2020

Business activities in the restaurant industry outside the Montréal Metropolitan Area, the Joliette Regional County Municipality and the city of L’Épiphanie are authorized to restart beginning Monday, June 15. In the latter territories, these activities may resume beginning June 22.

Restaurant owners can open their dining areas, including dining rooms and terraces. These locations must be set up to allow two metres of physical distance between customers, unless they occupy the same private residence or there is a physical barrier that limits contagion. In addition, customers can use food courts at shopping centres as long as they are set up in compliance with conditions outlined by public health authorities.

To learn more about the protective measures that must be put in place to protect people’s health when they go to restaurants, consult the Directives de santé publique concernant la réouverture des salles à manger et des autres lieux de consommation du secteur de la restauration. (in French only).

For details on the tools available to the restaurant industry, review the Commission des Normes, de l’Équité, de la Santé et de la Sécurité du Travail (CNESST) toolkit. (in French only).

Click here to read more.