Montreal COVID-19 alert now orange, private gatherings restricted to 6

Photo by Anna Marukhnyak

On September 20, the government of Quebec raised Montreal’s COVID-19 alert to orange Level 3, only five days after moving Montreal from green Level 1 to yellow Level 2. The escalation in alert level is due to a rapid increase in reported COVID-19 cases over the last two weeks, with 219 new cases in Montreal over the last 24 hours. 

The orange Level 3 alert level means that both indoor and outdoor private gatherings are restricted to a maximum of six people. Restaurants will now only permit reservations of six people or fewer, and venues with a liquor license will be prohibited from selling alcohol after 11pm, with alcohol consumption cut off at midnight. 

The government of Quebec also suggests that only one person from each household goes to stores for errands and grocery shopping, and recommends limiting inter-regional travel as much as possible.

In an email sent late September 20, Deputy Provost Fabrice Labeau informed the McGill community that the administration was reaching out to the government for further directives regarding university operations in light of the changing alert level. 

In a separate email on the evening of September 21, Deputy Provost Labeau detailed what changes will be made to McGill’s on campus activities as a result of this new designation. Notably, Study Hubs will now operate at a reduced capacity, and new event requests will be considered on an exceptional basis. This email also outlines that no changes will be made to the operation and status of student residences, the Student Wellness Hub, and the pool and fitness centres.

To reflect the recent rapid rise in cases and the start of the semester, McGill has created a COVID-19 case status page, updated once per week.

This is a developing story and will be updated as new information becomes available.

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