Quebec’s new overnight curfew won’t apply to Nunavik

But Nunavimmiut travellers to the south must adhere to new restrictions

Quebec Premier François Legault announced a new overnight curfew throughout the province starting this weekend, but it won’t apply to Nunavik. (Image courtesy of CPAC)

By Sarah Rogers

(Updated at 1:00 p.m.)

The Quebec government will impose stricter measures to slow the spread of COVID-19, including an overnight curfew and the closure of all non-essential businesses.

But the new measures won’t apply to Nunavik, the province said.

On Wednesday, Quebec Premier François Legault announced a curfew between 8 p.m. and 5 a.m., with fines between $1,000 and 6,000 for those who don’t comply. The curfew will be enforced from Jan. 9 to Feb. 8 and applies to Quebeckers from all other regions, apart from essential workers.

The new measures won’t apply to the James Bay Eeyou Itschee region nor to Nunavik, where there are currently just two active but unrelated cases of COVID-19.

The Nunavik Regional Board of Health and Social Services said that officials are evaluating the need for changes to the current measures in place across the region, and may announce new restrictions in the weeks to come, the board said in a Jan. 7 release.

In the meantime, the health board said it “strongly discourages” any non-essential travel to and from the region.

Regional organizations are warning Nunavimmiut who travel south that they will be subject to those restrictions elsewhere in the province.

Air Inuit said that its flights to and from the region will continue to operate without change.

“For any traveller arriving in Montreal, be aware that a curfew is applicable from 8 p.m. to 5 a.m. every day and that you should proceed to your lodging destination directly from the airport,” the airline said in a Jan. 7 notice.

“Keep your boarding pass as proof that you are in transit from the airport.”

Regional authorities imposed a curfew on Nunavik in the early weeks of the pandemic, as well as limits to alcohol sales, following the region’s first confirmed case of COVID-19 on March 29.

That curfew was initially in place from 9 p.m. to 6 a.m. in all 14 communities, but was gradually eased through the spring and then lifted in mid-June.

Nunavik police noted a drop in police interventions and detentions over that period.

The Nunavik Regional Board of Health and Social Services says the region should see its first vaccinations by February, and possibly sooner.

The health board has confirmed that Nunavik will receive the Moderna vaccine, though officials are still working out the details of the rollout in the region.

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(5) Comments:

  1. Posted by No foresight or planning? on

    The World has known for almost a year that a vaccine was coming. The World has known for at least 6 months the basic requirements for the delivery of the vaccine. With all this foresight, the Nunavik Regional Health Board is still planning the rollout of the vaccine? That’s pathetic !

    • Posted by Took words from my mouth on

      Yes indeed, I’ve been thinking the same. Why didn’t they plan this administrative aspect in the fall? It’s all part and parcel of the lack of insight with our Nunavik so called professional service. The thing is too, people have been asking why the delay in the vaccine, as we know it’s on a storage shelf in kuujjuaq. The hesitation to give out the vaccine is as good as their confidence. Nunavut has gone ahead as usual and getting it done.

  2. Posted by Opportunity knocks on

    With most of Quebec in Lockdown, but Not Nunavik. This is a great time to administer the vaccine in Nunavik. It’s a more or less quiet time considering all aspects. If the vaccine continues to be delayed, we could go higher in covid numbers , unnecessarily, like out of control Ontario. Wonder who makes the decision in Nunavik, or is Nunavik under the direct control of Quebec City? It’s not good , either which way.

  3. Posted by Such experts out there on

    Amazing how self-made experts come out of the woodwork when they have absolutely no idea about the work and the logistics that go into this kind of plan.
    It was not known what kind of vaccine was going to be approved in the fall, let alone if there was going to be one a year ago, so how could it have been planned without knowledge of all the important facts?
    The storage life of the moderna vaccine cannot allow it to be sitting on the shelf either, so I am wondering how “took words from my mouth” can say its on a shelf.

    • Posted by Experts on

      Sitting on shelve in a freezer, no? Administration of a vaccine from Nunavik, should look no further than Nunavut. There’s no reason not to anticipate. This vaccine should be drawn up in a syringe and giving out stat. The vaccine has arrived in kuujjuaq, as by the horses mouth. No need for criticism to the expert that spoke to the horse. No denying here. This doesn’t belong to Nunavik, it’s belongs to those that know the difference

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