As has been his habit since the beginning of the pandemic, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau appeared before the media in Ottawa this Saturday, May 9, to provide an update on COVID-19 in Canada. During it, he told the public that he is keeping a close eye on the situation in Montreal.

As of May 9 at 1 p.m., Montreal now has 18,855 confirmed COVID-19 cases, which is over half of Quebec's total of 36,986.

Projections about the epidemic curve for the coming months in Montreal, based on a study by the Institut national de santé publique Québec (INSPQ), do not look very promising.

During the press conference's question period, Christian Noël, a journalist from Radio-Canada, wanted to know the PM's opinion on the deconfinement of Greater Montreal.

"Are you worried and do you think the Quebec government is going in the wrong direction?" he asked.

The Prime Minister was rather vague, but assured that he was working closely with Quebec authorities:

"I am a Quebecer. I am a member of Parliament for Montreal. I am very concerned for the citizens in Montreal, just as I am concerned for people across the country," he responded.

He also reiterated the importance of relying on science in these times of crisis.

"We must rely on science. We owe it to ourselves to make sure that what we are doing takes into account the protection of our citizens, our seniors, as a top priority."

The PM believes that economic recovery is important, but it must be done in the right way, without putting Canadians at risk.

"Yes, there are concerns and I am working very closely with other governments, including François Legault's government, to ensure the right steps are being taken to keep people safe."

He indicated, among other things, that he is closely monitoring the situation in the CHSLDs in his riding of Papineau.

 

Trudeau also took advantage of this press briefing to remind the media of some of the measures taken by his government to support those who are at the front in the battle against COVID-19.

The Prime Minister is working with the various provinces for an agreement to increase the wages of essential workers.

"This week, thanks to this agreement, we are taking an important step towards putting more money in their pockets."

He also mentioned federal support for the food sector and the extension of the wage subsidy for businesses announced on Friday, May 8.


This article was originally published in French on Narcity Québec.

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