Coronavirus: Everything you need to know in Montreal today

Apr 3 2020, 1:53 pm

Every day in Canada, a lot of news regarding COVID-19 comes out nationally and locally.

And for now, we will be putting together Montreal and Canada’s top headlines daily to help digest the news in one place.

Throughout the day, you can see all the headlines in real-time here.

Top coronavirus stories for April 3, as of 5 pm ET:  

65 people have died in Quebec as a result of coronavirus

The Quebec government announced that the province’s death toll associated with coronavirus has increased to 65.

That’s an increase of 32 from Thursday’s numbers of 36.

Quebec Premier François Legault did stress that while the numbers have increased drastically in 24 hours, the “vast majority” are not deaths within the past day but instead, deaths that have been confirmed as coronavirus-related that were “under investigation” from weeks prior.

The 41st edition of Montreal’s Jazz Fest has been cancelled

After having had taken place every summer since 1980, the world’s largest jazz musical festival has been cancelled.

Montreal’s Jazz Fest, one of the city’s landmark festivals, averages more than two million spectators annually and features over 3,000 artists from 30 countries around the world, totally more than 650 concerts over a two week span.

The Just For Laughs festival has been postponed until the fall

Apart from Jazz Fest, another iconic Montreal festival will feel the ripple effect of the pandemic.

Just For Laughs, the world-renowned comedy festival initially slated to take place in July, will now take place from September 29 to October 11.

“This decision was not taken lightly, however made possible by the agility, vitality and creative strength of the company,” JFL said in a release.

Quebec adds bike repair shops to list of essential services

Quebec cyclists will be able to get their bikes tuned up after the provincial government added bike repair shops to its list of essential services that are allowed to be operational during the pandemic.

The service was deemed essential after pressure from both Vélo Quebec and Montreal’s Mayor Valérie Plante.

Plante says bike shops are designated services that allow people to get to work, the pharmacy, and grocery stores without having to rely on public transit.

Trudeau announces $100 million to meet urgent food needs across Canada

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has announced that Canada is investing $100 million to improve access to food for Canadians facing social, economic, and health impacts of the pandemic.

The funds will be distributed through organizations like Food Banks Canada and the Salvation Army.

Trudeau also asked Canadians to reach out to local food banks if they can, as the food banks have fewer volunteers and higher demands.

According to the government, this funding will be used to purchase food and other basic necessities, and will help to buy or rent equipment and other materials to help address the unique needs of the communities they serve and the health-related challenges presented by COVID-19.

“The pandemic is creating a lot of uncertainty,” said Trudeau, adding that the government is investing in food banks so “you can meet the urgent needs of your family.”

White House tells US respiratory manufacturer to stop exporting to Canada

The American-based manufacture of N95 respirator masks, 3M, has said the White House asked them to stop sending US-made respirators to Canada.

In a statement issued Friday morning, the company says its employees have gone “above and beyond” to manufacture as many N95 respirators as possible for the US market.

Including earlier this past week, when the company said, with the help of President Donald Trump’s administration, it secured approval from the Chinese government to export 10 million respirators to the US from a sister plant.

As per the company, the administration also requested that “3M cease exporting respirators that we currently manufacture in the United States to the Canadian and Latin American markets.”

BIXI Bikes to launch fully operational service in Montreal this month

Amidst a slew of closures and postponements, Montreal Mayor Valérie Plante has announced that BIXI Bikes will roll ahead as planned.

The rentable bike service will be operational as of April 15 throughout Montreal, according to Plante, while stating that Santé Montreal has deemed the decision as “favourable.”

Plante says that similar to buses and metros, BIXIs will be used for “essential travels only.”

14 more coronavirus deaths reported in Ontario as cases surge over 3000

The Province of Ontario confirms there are 462 new known cases of the virus, bringing the province’s total up to 3,255, as of Friday morning.

A total of 67 people have died from coronavirus, with 14 newly reported deaths since the last update on Thursday.

The province says that 1,023 patients have recovered and 1,245 are currently under investigation.

There have been 32 outbreaks reported in long-term care homes, a noticeable increase from the 26 reported on Thursday.