Wearing a mask will be mandatory from next week, in stores and municipal buildings in Côte-Saint-Luc, west of Montreal, one of the cities in Quebec most affected by the pandemic.
The by-law is in force since June 15, but from 1 July, the period of tolerance comes to an end and the shops that do not provide disposable masks to the clients at the entrance to risk a fine ranging from 100 to 500$.
“It is up to businesses to make the application. If anyone enters into the trade without a mask, and he refuses the mask is disposable, the trade will not be punished because it was proposed at least. But if the trade doesn’t do enough and it’s not about regulation, it may have a fine. It gives no penalty to a client who refuses,” said the mayor of the city, Mitchell Brownstein.
Already, most of the stores in Côte-Saint-Luc has complied with the rules, and the response is very good, according to Mr. Brownstein.
“I was talking to the owner of the IGA and he told me that his turnover had increased compared to last year. It means that a lot of people who do not live in Côte-Saint-Luc come to do their grocery shopping here because they feel more secure,” noted the chief magistrate.
The population is also very much in favour of regulation, he says.
“It is sure that there are always critics, but I would say that 95% of the people agree with the regulation. Elderly people are a lot more security,” he illustrated.
In Côte-Saint-Luc, more than 30% of the population is over 65 years old, which makes the city in Quebec, with the largest rate of older people. For the mayor Brownstein, this regulation was necessary to protect this vulnerable population.
He believes, however, that in anticipation of the second wave, a regulation should make compulsory the wearing of the mask on the whole of Quebec.
“You should know that every time someone dies of the COVID-19, it is the parent, the aunt, the uncle of someone”, he insisted.
Former hot spot
At the beginning of the crisis, the city had become the main focus of contamination in Quebec. The situation has now improved considerably.
Today, the rate of people infected since the beginning of the pandemic in Côte-Saint-Luc is substantially the same as the one that is recorded in most montreal neighbourhoods.
Remains that the municipal government has always remained vigilant in the fight against the disease. In this city of a little more than 30 000 inhabitants, about 50,000 masks were distributed so far, noted the mayor Brownstein.