A day after announcing its plan to reopen schools across Quebec, Premier François Legault has highlighted a plan to relaunch the province’s economy.
Joined by Quebec’s Finance Minister, Pierre Fitzgibbon, Legault has announced that “some businesses” will be opening throughout May.
Legault says specific sectors will open “gradually over the following weeks.”
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“I would like to tell you first of all, that work was done in four groups, the economic ministry, the public health team, the employment minister, and people from the commission of health and safety at work, to ensure all measures will be considered.”
Throughout May, Legault said three types of businesses will reopen: construction, manufacturing, and retail
Retail in Quebec, excluding the Greater Montreal area, is scheduled to open on May 4. Construction and manufacturing (along with retail in Montreal) are slated to reopen on May 11, and 100% of employees in the manufacturing industry will be permitted to return to work on May 25.
When it comes to stores, only those that lead directly outside are permitted. Meaning, shops inside malls will not reopen to avoid unnecessary meetings inside malls.
“The idea here, is to reopen gradually and have follow ups to see if there’s an impact on contagion and in our hospitals,” continued Legault.
Legault stressed the important of respecting the physical distancing guidelines and says that Quebecers can’t think “everything is allowed” nor that businesses reopening means it’s a “free for all.”
The premier added Quebecers will need to keep distancing measures in place for “a long time” and citizens still can’t have any gatherings.
Aujourd’hui, on vous présente notre plan de réouverture graduelle des entreprises. Notre défi, c’est de relancer l’économie sans relancer la pandémie.
🎥Suivez notre point de presse en direct 👇https://t.co/Rdu1uQEec7
— François Legault (@francoislegault) April 28, 2020
The premier said the biggest threat remains in people who are 60-years-old and older, citing that 97% of the deaths, since the beginning, occur in people who are 60 and older.
Fitzgibbon said, in French, “We will later pronounce a plan for other businesses to gradually add workers and monitor the effects of the contagion.”
He added that the government will reevaluate the plan if cases worsen.