By Gordon Lambie
As of next Monday, July 12, the recommended amount of distance to maintain between people not living in the same household will be reduced from two metres to one metre, according to an announcement from Quebec’s Health ministry issued on Wednesday. The change will result in changes to a number of the COVID-19 restrictions currently in place across Quebec.
Among the changes announced is the elimination of capacity limits in businesses, although business owners are still expected to ensure that people can maintain a one-metre distance from other patrons. Indoor spaces with fixed audience seating will only need to ensure a single seat between people from separate households, and sporting activities will be allowed to admit seated spectators again up to a maximum of 50 people inside, and 100 outside.
A two-metre distance will still be required in singing activities, as well as in spaces of high-intensity physical activity like gyms.
The announcement is also explicit about the fact that masks or face coverings will remain obligatory in all public spaces, such as businesses, and recommended at private indoor gatherings where there are either
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people with increased vulnerability, or not everyone is adequately vaccinated.
Further clarification on the new regulations for places of work is expected in the coming days from Quebec’s workplace health and safety board, the CNESST.
The Province of Quebec reported 103 new cases of COVID-19 on Wednesday, bringing the total number of people infected to 375,365 and the number of active cases to 731.
There was one new death recorded, for total of 11,219. After a long period of continuous decreases, the number of hospitalizations in the province increased by one, to 103, but the number of people in intensive care still decreased by two, to reach 25.
Four new cases were reported in the Eastern Townships, two in the Haute-Yamaska and one in each of the Haut Saint Francois and Granit regions. As a result, the number of active cases in the region increased to 21, with 12 in the Haute-Yamaska, two in each of the Granit, Des Sources, and Sherbrooke areas, one in the Pommeraie, Coaticook, and Haut-Saint-François areas and none in the Memphremagog and Val Saint-François. There were no new deaths, and the number of hospitalizations remained unchanged at seven, with no one in intensive care.
So far, a total of 8,964,394 doses of vaccine have been administered in Quebec which, when combined with a total of 25,327 doses administered outside Québec, makes for a cumulative total of 8,989,721 doses received by Quebecers out of 11,311,605 doses received by the province overall.