Here’s What It Actually Means For Montreal To Move To ‘Orange’ Alert

A new document reveals what the next stage of the pandemic could look like.
Here’s What It Actually Means For Montreal To Move To ‘Orange’ Alert

Quebec recently classified some regions* in the province as moving up from the green to the yellow level, according to its COVID-19 Regional Alert and Response System. It seems obvious that this means things are getting worse, but many Montrealers have found themselves wondering what other changes the colour-coded levels indicate. While the government revealed some details about the restrictions that accompany each level, they were few and far between — until now. 

On September 16, public policy analyst Patrick Déry leaked a government presentation on Twitter that explained — in detail — what our new reality could look like at each different level.

A version of the document has since been made public on the Ministry of Health and Social Services website. 

Editor's Choice: The STM Released Mask Horoscopes For Everyone & Really Came For All Of Us...

In the presentation, the government's protocols and plans for the green, yellow, orange and red levels are laid out clearly.

And it's alarming to think that this could be our future if cases continue to rise. 

Should the virus spread enough to reach the orange zone, private gatherings will be limited to six people and public gatherings will be limited to 50 people.

Bars, restaurant dining rooms, casinos, contact sports, gyms and spas could also shut down again and a mask would be required at all times — including in outdoor markets. 

In order for Quebec to shift to the orange level, the COVID-19 numbers need to show certain criteria, including:

  • Six to 10 cases per 100,000 people

  • A 3-5% proportion of positive tests

  • A 20 to 40% proportion of intensive care hospital beds dedicated to coronavirus patients

Luckily, the orange level is considered a short-term intervention, while the government tries to contain the spread of the virus and get the population back to the green level.

[rebelmouse-image 26883207 photo_credit="Minist\u00e8re de la Sant\u00e9 et des Services sociaux" expand=1 original_size="893x670"] Ministère de la Santé et des Services sociaux

Obviously, restrictions at the red level are even more intense. For instance, private gatherings would be limited to members of the same household. 

But ideally, it won't come to that.

The document shows at least 40% of intensive care beds would need to be occupied by COVID-19 patients in order to warrant that level of alert.

At the green level — or what the document calls our "new normal" — base measures are still in place.*

So it looks like we'd better get used to social distancing, barriers in physical spaces, limiting interpersonal contact and hand-washing stations in public areas. 

[rebelmouse-image 26883200 photo_credit="Minist\u00e8re de la Sant\u00e9 et des Services sociaux" expand=1 original_size="892x666"] Ministère de la Santé et des Services sociaux

You can check out the government's plan for potential next stages of the pandemic here.

*This article has been updated.

Mamadi Camara Is Suing Montreal & Prosecutors For $940,000

He says he was the target of racial profiling and "abusive force" by the SPVM.

Mamadi III Fadi Camara, members of his family and two neighbours are suing the Montreal police (via the City of Montreal) and prosecutors (via Quebec's Attorney General) for damages amounting to $1.2 million. Camara is a Montrealer who was wrongfully arrested by the SPVM for attempted murder in January 2021.

This article contains graphic content that might not be suitable for some readers.

Keep Reading Show less

Last May, the Quebec government unveiled the outline of a new program supporting the training of 2,500 people in the field of information technology and communications. The list of training courses paid $650 per week is out and there is something for everyone.

Since July 1, it has been possible for people who have had to recover from unemployment due to the pandemic and for people who have not been studying full time in the last 12 months to register for one of the training programs of the Program for the requalification and the accompaniment in information technology and communications (PRATIC).

Keep Reading Show less

Remember last year when it seemed that every week there were new COVID-19 rules that the Quebec government would spring on us and we all felt really down? Well, it's the same thing this year, but instead of misery, we're feeling optimistic because this summer's new COVID-19 rules have an eye towards a pandemic-free future.

Quebec is ushering in a new wave of COVID-19 rule relaxations on July 12 and here's what you need to know. 

Keep Reading Show less

On Thursday, Health Minister Christian Dubé outlined what Quebec's vaccine passport system would look like and when it would take effect.

The purpose of a vaccine passport would be to allow Quebecers with two doses of a vaccine to access some non-essential services in the event of a spike in new cases. Here's the rundown.

Keep Reading Show less