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A Montreal Restaurant Says It Will Reopen This Month & Ignore COVID-19 Rules

A Montreal restaurant promises to open on January 30 in violation of public health rules. Quebec ordered the closure of bars on December 20 and restaurant dining rooms on December 31 and has not said when they can reopen.

"We can no longer comply with these arbitrary measures that have been proven NOT to be effective in solving the issue we are all faced with," avenue Fairmount Italian restaurant Kesté wrote in an Instagram post Thursday, further warning that "if something doesn't change and we don't take a stand small businesses will turn into something of the past."

Kesté is calling on other restaurants, bars and cafés to open on January 30, too. It shared an image of a flier encouraging businesses to "take back our rights" and participate in a "national mass movement" of civil disobedience.

"As a city we all need to work together to no longer allow any more unnecessary lockdowns that no one supports," the Instagram post reads. "We cannot fix the damage done in the past but we can definitely prevent it from happening again."

Health Minister Christian Dubé responded to Kesté's commitment to reopen in a press conference on Thursday.

"We understand that people want to go back as quickly as possible to a normal life," he said. "But we need to do things gradually."

"I would just ask this restaurant owner and all other merchants to be patient. I know it's difficult." He pointed to government programs offering businesses financial support.

"I'm just saying, let's make sure that we don't go back."

    Thomas MacDonald
    Senior Editor
    Thomas MacDonald is a Senior Editor for MTL Blog focused on Montreal public transit and is based in Montreal, Quebec.
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