Due to the increase in the number of COVID-19 cases in several regions of Quebec, the government has just announced that certain health measures will be strengthened. The changes relevant to retailers are:
- Starting April 1, 2021 at 8 p.m., “special emergency measures“ (webpage in French) will be introduced in the Quebec City Metropolitan Community (including Quebec City and Lévis) as well as in the city of Gatineau and the MRC des Collines-de-l’Outaouais, until April 12, 2021. These measures are the same as those that were in place earlier in the year (January):
- “Non-essential” businesses will close. Grocery stores and other food retail, big box stores, pharmacies, hardware stores, pet stores and convenience stores will remain open.
- Only the sale of “essential” products will be permitted. No list is provided, but the following are expected to be excluded: ” toys, clothing, books, electronics, decorative items, kitchen items and appliances.”
- Schools, hair salons, dining rooms, cinemas, gyms, etc. will be closed.
- Curfew in these cities will be rolled back to 8 p.m. (business to be closed at 7:30 p.m. at the latest).
- “Online or telephone purchases and delivery remain permitted. Businesses will be able to allow the collection of goods, provided it is carried out outside.”
- Financial support measures will be re-established for businesses forced to close.
- Only traffic areas will be open in shopping centres to ensure access to businesses that are not affected by the closures.
Starting April 1, 2021 at 8 p.m., the following regions will move into red zone (maximum alert):
- In the red zone, restaurant dining rooms must be closed. Takeout and drive-through orders are permissible. Only delivery is possible during the curfew.
- The curfew remains in place and is in effect from 9:30 p.m. until 5:00 a.m. in the red and orange zones (businesses must close no later than 9 p.m.).
- REMINDER: The government released an online attestation (in French only) concerning travel during the curfew.
- The measures concerning the restriction on the number of customers admitted to commercial enterprises remain the same throughout the territory (floor area accessible to customers in m2 ÷ per 20 m2 ). This does not include employees.