Through the contribution of over 450 Quebec companies, the government is aiming to vaccinate 500,000 Quebecers at these corporate vaccination centres.
Each centre will be responsible for vaccinating its employees and partners, as well as the employees of nearby companies and their respective families — but they are required to commit to "respecting the order of priority for the vaccination campaign."
"We, the undersigned, demand that the Government of Quebec publicly reject, as of now, the idea of a mandatory vaccination passport and that it commit itself to do like the Governor of Florida, Ron DeSantis, has done, that is to say, prohibit the obligation to present a vaccination passport in order to attend certain events and practice certain activities," the petition states.
Samson, a former Coalition Avenir Québec member who switched sides in June, held a press conference about the petition alongside Conservative Party of Quebec leader Eric Duhaime on August 12. They explained that the party had already collected 133,000 signatures on a previous petition that did not meet the criteria of the National Assembly.
"We reviewed the wording [...] So we're going to ask these hundreds of thousands of people to re-sign their petition on the National Assembly website, and we're going to invite Quebecers who don't agree with the vaccine passport to come forward as well," Samson said.
The petition, which was posted to the National Assembly website on August 12, had garnered more than 75,000 signatures at the time this article was published.
Mary Simon's approval rating is lower in Quebec compared to the rest of Canada, a poll released Wednesday showed, because the new governor general can't speak French.
An Angus Reid Institute poll of 2,049 Canadians found only 49% of Quebecers approve of her appointment compared to 74% of respondents in the rest of the country.
"Despite being from Nunavik (the Inuit homeland in Northern Quebec), and having been awarded the [province's] highest distinction, many Quebecers remain unconvinced Mary Simon is the best choice for governor general due to her lack of fluency in French," stated the Angus Reid Institute.
"Support is cleaved along linguistic divides in the only majority Francophone province in Canada," it continued, as only 40% of Quebecers whose first language is French approve of her appointment compared to 81% of English speakers.
Though Simon, the country's first Indigenous governor general, is not currently fluent in French, she has promised to learn, Angus Reid stated.
A startling 46% of seafood samples sold in restaurants and grocery stores in four major Canadian cities were mislabelled, according to a report published Wednesday by the non-profit group Oceana Canada.
Often, low-cost knockoffs were pawned off as fancy fishes; out of a total of 94 samples, all 24 of butterfish, yellowtail and white tuna were mislabelled and over half of the samples labelled snapper was actually tilapia, "a much cheaper" fish.
Furthermore, there were 10 occasions where products labelled butterfish or tuna turned out to be escolar, a fish that "can cause acute gastrointestinal symptoms such as diarrhea, vomiting and nausea and is banned from sale in several countries," according to a news release.
Despite promises to tackle the issue, seafood fraud has been an ongoing problem in Canada. Oceana's multi-year DNA testing study found the Canadian city with the most fake fish was Montreal, where 52% of the samples were mislabelled, though Ottawa and Toronto did nearly as poorly, with mislabelling rates of 50% each.
Sayara Thurston, a seafood fraud campaigner, highlighted the need for better traceability systems to detect foul fish before they hit our dinner plates. "Buying fish shouldn't be a guessing game. Canadians deserve to have confidence in the seafood they eat."
This article's cover image was used for illustrative purposes only.
The premier said Quebec Health Minister Christian Dubé will disclose details of the vaccine passport in Quebec in the coming days.
Why does Legault think Quebec needs a vaccine passport?
Legault said that though the recent rise in new COVID-19 cases in Quebec is low compared to other countries, Quebec has entered the start of a fourth wave of COVID-19. Canada's chief public health officer, Dr. Theresa Tam, said there was evidence of a fourth wave in Canada on July 30.
"We will be giving certain privileges to those who have accepted the effort to go and get two doses," Legault said.
"[Those people] have to live a semi-normal life [and] have to be able to have access to all activities, including non-essential activities like going to a restaurant."
The premier said that in Quebec, 83% of the population over 12 years old has received one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine, while 67% of the population has received two.
"Right now the people finding themselves in the hospital, the large majority were not vaccinated," Legault said.
"Nobody in Quebec wants to relive what we lived last year, [...] being obliged to postpone surgeries because our hospitals are full," he said.
However, Legault confirmed that the province is maintaining the objective of having students on all levels — from elementary to university — return to school in-person this fall.
How could Quebec's vaccine passport be used?
In Quebec's July 8 announcement of its vaccine passport plan, the ministry of health said it would not be used to access essential or public services, like hospitals, schools and elections — but it could be implemented for non-essential services in high-risk activities like gyms, team sports, bars and restaurants.
The vaccine passport could also be implemented in moderate or low-risk activities that involve large groups of people, like arts and entertainment shows, festivals and sporting events.