Spacing social: the ex-president of St-Hubert’s request to Quebec city to relax the rules

Espacement social: l’ex-président de St-Hubert demande à Québec d’assouplir les règles

MONTREAL | The ex-president of les Rôtisseries St-Hubert, Jean-Pierre Léger, demand in Québec city to relax the more quickly the protection rules put in place to enable the food sector to rise to this pandemic.

“If we really want to support the industry to overcome this crisis and preserve the restaurants that create vitality in our streets, let’s give them the means to do so (…)”, writes the former president and chief executive officer of St-Hubert in a letter to the government, which The Journal has obtained a copy.

This letter, signed today speaks directly to the minister of Labour Jean Boulet, the minister of Agriculture André Lamontagne, as well as the national director of public Health, Dr. Horacio Arruda.

A meter too?

In his letter, the business man now retired press the Quebec government to be responsive to the reality of restaurateurs du Québec. An environment that he describes as “particularly fragile, even by working harder and inventiveness to keep afloat during these uncertain times”.

Jean-Pierre Léger in particular against the rule of a distance of two metres, become over weeks, an absolute norm. From his point of view, this last deserves today to be reviewed for the good of all.

“This rule is changing almost faster than the menu of a popular restaurant, he says. At the beginning of this pandemic, there was a distance of one meter, and then between 1 and 2 meters, and 2 meters. One could say that the explanations for the choice of this distance of 2 metres, they are also more than 2 metres of our understanding.”

France as an example

He cites as an example the case of France, which comes to allow the reopening of over 200 000 restaurants and cafés are limited to 1 metre rule social distancing. This rule, he says, is coming with other measures such as the requirement of hydroalcoholic gel, the establishment of a limit of clients per table, and of the means of payment without contact.

These measures, he stressed, were based on the results of a canadian study, sponsored by the world health Organization, which demonstrates that the risk of catching the Covid-19 decreases to 80 % when there is at least a distance of one metre.

“Is it an exaggeration to propose that other measures of physical protection to be able to afford to relax the rule of 2 meters ?”, request the pensioner to the government. Because in the name of prudence, is concerned, he said, “this strict requirement of 2 metres will give little chance for restaurateurs to survive”.

The elephant in the dining room

Jean Boulet, minister of Labour

André Lamontagne, minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food Dr. Horacio Arruda, national Director of the public Health

Gentlemen,

Good news for the restaurateurs of Quebec : they will be able to resume service.

For most restaurateurs, what counts before all it is the contact with the customers. In Quebec, we have the chance to have an audience curious and hungry for new culinary experiences. This does not preclude that the world of the restoration remains particularly fragile, even by working harder and inventiveness to keep afloat during these uncertain times.

Today, the restaurant owners are focused on the re-opening, since, in the next two weeks, all the dining halls of the Quebec will re-open it. However, there is an elephant in the dining room… this is the famous rule of 2 metres.

Obviously, this rule is changing almost faster than the menu of a popular restaurant. At the beginning of this pandemic, there was a distance of one meter, and then between 1 and 2 meters, and 2 meters. One could say that the explanations for the choice of this distance of 2 metres, they are also more than 2 metres of our understanding.

Let us be clear : the further we are away from each other, the less we are at risk. It is agreed on that.

By contrast, France has to allow the re-opening of over 200 000 restaurants and cafes, imposing a 1 meter of social distancing, but through the application of other rules : the presence of hydroalcoholic gel, clear display, limit of guests per table, methods of payment without contact, etc

This decision of the capital world of the restoration reflects very well the results of a canadian study, sponsored by the world health Organization and recently published in The Lancet, which demonstrates that the risk of catching the COVID-19 decreases to 80 % when there is at least a distance of one metre.

Is it an exaggeration to propose that other measures of physical protection to be able to afford to relax the rule of 2 meters ? In the name of prudence, the strict requirement of 2 metres in the restaurants give little chance for restaurateurs to survive.

If we really want to support the industry to overcome this crisis and preserve the restaurants that create vitality in our streets, let’s give them the means to do it and do trust the creativity of the restaurateurs to put in place security measures for their customers, for their employees and for themselves.

Jean-Pierre Léger

CALLING ALL

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Write to us at scoop@quebecormedia.com

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