After hinting for weeks that public health restrictions in COVID-19 red zones might continue past the end of October, Quebec Premier François Legault is expected to announce they will be prolonged and even expanded — with Grade 9 students joining their older peers who have been learning from home one day out of two.
The premier and public health officials are holding a news conference at 5 p.m. in Montreal. Legault is in town for a briefing with local health officials.
You can watch the update from the premier live here and on the CBC Montreal Facebook page.
The seven-day average of new daily cases in the province was at more than 1,000 for much of October, though cases in the past few days have dipped below that number.
Quebec recorded 808 new cases of the novel coronavirus Monday and 879 Sunday. Legault hasn’t said what figure health officials are watching for to determine next steps.
Quebecers in designated red zones are asked not to gather with people living outside of their household — unless they live alone, in which case they are allowed to pair up with another single-occupant household for however long their region is in red.
Restaurant dining rooms and gyms are also closed in red zones, but stores and a number of other businesses and workplaces, including shopping centres, are allowed to remain open.
WATCH | What life is like inside a red zone:
Late last month, Legault announced a series of public health measures that would be categorized according to four alert levels in Quebec’s different regions. Each region is coded by a colour that designates its alert level.
Out of 19 regions outlined by the province, 10 are either fully or partially in red, the maximum alert level.
Legault initially said red zones would see heightened restrictions for 28 days, but soon after said that period could be extended if measures aren’t respected and case numbers don’t drop.