At Thursday's COVID-19 press update, Mayor Valérie Plante asked Montrealers to stay in their own neighbourhoods as much as possible. Accompanied by Regional Public Health Director Dr. Mylène Drouin, the Mayor reminded everyone of the need to stay inside and respect the regulations as much as possible to stop the spread of the virus. The City of Montreal also extended its state of emergency and put additional measures in place to prevent people from gathering in public parks.
"I want to remind everybody to keep their distance and to avoid non-essential travel. If you have to go outside and get a breath of fresh air, that's fine, but it's not time to go outside and discover the city by walking or by biking," she said.
"We ask everybody to stay in their neighbourhood, go to the grocery store in your neighbourhood, go to the pharmacy in your neighbourhood. It's very important to contain, as much as possible, the spread of the virus."
The SPVM will also ramp up patrols in six of Montreal's major parks including the Lachine Canal, Parc Jeanne-Mance, Parc Laurier, Parc Maisonneuve, Parc Mont-Royal, and Parc La Fontaine.
Fines of $1,000 will be handed out to those who flagrantly violate the regulations.
Earlier Wednesday, Premier Legault also asked the SPVM to be "less tolerant" of social distancing rule-breakers and hand out more $1,000-$6,000 fines.
#COVID19 : Mise à jour aujourd’hui sur la situation à Montréal, sur le respect des consignes, sur les mesures mises… https://t.co/bufC0edL9F— Valérie Plante (@Valérie Plante) 1585854955.0
"There are people, at the moment, who do not respect the instructions. There are people who are gathering less than two meters away from [other] groups of people," he said.
"I do not think we can accept that the vast majority of people are making an effort and that this effort will be destroyed because a few people do not take it seriously."
"There are lives in danger, and if we continue to have rallies and businesses that operate when it is not essential, well [...] there will be deaths."
As of April 2, Montreal accounts for 2,642 of Quebec's total of 5,518 COVID-19 cases.
#COVID19 - Au Québec, en date du 2 avril 2020 à 13h, la situation est la suivante : ➡️5 518 cas confirmés ➡️36 décè… https://t.co/6Z9eesnQe3— Santé Québec (@Santé Québec) 1585847132.0
Director Drouin called the city the "epicentre" of the outbreak in the province.
C’est injuste pour la majorité de Québécois qui respecte les consignes de voir quelques personnes nuire à nos effor… https://t.co/sDRnSh4cab— François Legault (@François Legault) 1585858629.0
Stay tuned for more news.