At his daily COVID-19 briefing on Monday, Premier François Legault announced that almost all essential businesses in Quebec will be closed on Sundays starting in April. Only dépanneurs, gas stations, pharmacies, and restaurants with take-out will stay open. Legault said that this will give workers in essential services, who are incredibly busy these days, a much-needed break. 

"I know a lot of people have been working seven days a week, they're getting tired.

"I'm announcing today that, for the month of April, businesses will now be closed on Sundays. The idea is to give our workers time to get some rest.

"Therefore, all businesses will have to close except gas stations, convenience stores, pharmacies and take-out from restaurants."

He made clear that large grocery stores are included in the list of businesses that must close.

"This means that our big grocery stores, for example, will have to give employees a break. So, I think it will be good for everyone that every Sunday in April, grocery stores will be closed."

The news comes after the number of cases in Quebec rose once again. As of March 30, there are 590 new cases in the province, bringing the total to 3,430.

Three new deaths were also reported. According to Legault, the number of intensive care patients hasn't increased as much as anticipated. 

"We're facing a long and tough battle against the virus. We'll need to keep our spirits up," said Legault.

Legault reiterated that Quebecers must follow the established rules and regulations to protect themselves from COVID-19. 

"Quebecers must remain united to win the battle against the virus," added the Premier.

In the last week, Quebec officials stepped up their efforts to stop the spread of the virus and flatten the curve.

In Montreal, Mayor Plante has declared a local state of emergency, a declaration that she says empowers the city to better respond to the needs of the homeless population.

Montreal accounts for almost half the COVID-19 cases in the province.

Within the city, there are six areas that have been particularly affected, according to Regional Public Health Director Dr. Mylène Drouin.

Stay tuned for more news.

NOW WATCH 6 Montreal Areas Are Most Affected By COVID-19, With Over 50 Cases Each (VIDEO)

 
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