Despite the upcoming plans to gradually reopen Montreal, Premier François Legault stressed that "the battle is not won" and that the government "will not hesitate" to push back deconfinement if necessary. The government is preparing to reopen certain businesses and elementary schools in the region on May 11 and May 19, respectively. "I said it when I announced the dates for the schools then for the companies, if the situation deteriorates, there will be no opening in Montreal," said Legault at Thursday's press update.
"We tabled a plan, a forecast of deconfinement, especially in Montreal. I'm not too worried about the regions, but, for Montreal, there, it is very important, if we want to be able to start deconfinement in Montreal, first, that there are no gatherings."
Legault reassured the public that any and all deconfinement measures in Quebec will be heavily supervised by Dr. Horacio Arruda and the province's public health officials.
"With your neighbours, with your friends, with your family, please, if we want to be able to deconfine, especially in Montreal, there should be no gatherings. The battle is not won in Montreal," said Legault.
Legault outlined three important details that people must keep in mind during the province's gradual deconfinement.
"If we want to succeed in meeting the objectives and the plan we have given ourselves, that we respect the distance of two metres with other people," he explained.
"If you ever think that you are not able to respect the two meters, you have to put on a mask. And it is also important to pay attention, special attention to people who are 60 years old or more."
"It's not because I don't love you, people 60 or older, it's just because I want to keep you with us."
In some regions, the government will gradually remove police controls on travel over a three-week period in May, beginning May 4.
Non-essential travel is still discouraged, however.
Dr. Arruda further clarified how the public must interpret the deconfinement measures.
As he's said in the past, deconfinement is not an invitation to go back to business as usual.
"This deconfinement that we are currently doing with daycare centres, with certain sectors of activity, must be seen as a new definition of 'essential worker,'" he explained.
"That does not mean that we relax completely, and that is major, in my opinion, because the number of reopenings will be measured to be able to see what is going on with this movement, then to be able to intervene there."
Stay tuned for more news.