Quebec Premier François Legault announced that all non-essential economic activities will be paused until at least April 13.
As part of his daily COVID-19 briefings, Legault said provincial public health officials determined the virus is spreading quicker than before.
Grocery stores, pharmacies, gas stations, SAQs, and SQDCs will remain open throughout the province though they are all taking preventative measures to limit the outbreak.
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Legault said the shutdown will go into effect on Tuesday, March 24 at midnight, but urged businesses to close “as soon as possible.”
“I’m saying that we have entered a new stage, one that is more critical,” said Legault in French. “It is now time to add measures to limit the contagion. Today, I have made the decision to close all the enterprises and businesses except for the essential services until the 13th of April.”
Legault said that Quebec will be “on pause” for the next three weeks and said that although difficult, the stricter measures are “necessary” to combat the virus from spreading even more.