National Newswatch

Hundreds defy Montreal’s 8 p.m. curfew in violent, destructive protest

Apr 11 2021 — Giuseppe Valiante — MONTREAL — Hundreds of protestors gathered in Montreal on Sunday in defiance of a newly adjusted curfew intended to stem surging COVID-19 case numbers before dozens of them started fires and damaged property in the city's old quarter. Police responded with tear gas in a bid to control the crowd, who were purportedly protesting Quebec […]

‘A fragile balance’: Legault juggling COVID restrictions and Quebecers’ mental health

Nov 2 2020 — Giuseppe Valiante — MONTREAL — Pandemic-related restrictions in place across much of the province must remain despite the risk they bring to people's mental health, Quebec Premier Francois Legault said Monday. He told reporters the government's partial lockdown orders -- banning gatherings and shutting bars, gyms and entertainment venues in so-called red zones -- are leading people to […]

Quebec suspends private refugee sponsorships by organizations for one year

Oct 28 2020 — Giuseppe Valiante — MONTREAL — Quebec is suspending all private refugee sponsorships by organizations because it says it has serious concerns with the integrity of the program. The province said today that until November 2021, only groups of two to five people can privately sponsor a refugee. All larger organizations including church groups and non-profits that have privately […]

Lawyer Paul St-Pierre Plamondon, 43, elected new leader of Parti Quebecois

Oct 9 2020 — Giuseppe Valiante — MONTREAL — Paul St-Pierre Plamondon, a 43-year-old lawyer without a seat in Quebec's legislature, defeated the establishment candidate on the third round of voting Friday to become the new leader of the sovereigntist Parti Quebecois. Plamondon, who didn't make it past the first ballot when he ran for party leader in 2016, beat PQ member […]

Quebec says it will no longer release daily updates on COVID-19 deaths, new cases

Jun 25 2020 — Giuseppe Valiante — MONTREAL — Quebec's public health director says the province has reached a turning point in its management of the COVID-19 pandemic, and therefore authorities will no longer be releasing daily data related to coronavirus infections. "Over the course of the past few weeks, the different indicators ... that we’ve been following closely regarding the number of cases, number […]

Pandemic erases Quebec’s projected surplus, throws province into $15B deficit

Jun 19 2020 — Giuseppe Valiante — QUEBEC — Three months after projecting a surplus of nearly $3 billion, Quebec's finance minister announced Friday that the COVID-19 pandemic will blow through Quebec's financial reserves and leave the province with a $15-billion deficit at the end of the fiscal year. That figure includes a $4-billion contingency fund that Eric Girard said will help the province survive a second wave […]

5 things to know about Quebec watchdog probing N.B. police shootings

Jun 16 2020 — Giuseppe Valiante — MONTREAL — Quebec's police watchdog, the Bureau des enquetes independantes, is investigating two recent police shootings of Indigenous people in New Brunswick. On June 4, 26-year-old Chantel Moore was shot by a member of the Edmundston Police Department. Police said the officer was performing a wellness check when he allegedly encountered a woman holding a knife. […]

Quebec to allow indoor gatherings up to 50 people; reduce distancing for kids

Jun 15 2020 — Giuseppe Valiante — MONTREAL — Quebec will allow indoor public gatherings of up to 50 people beginning June 22, and is reducing the physical distancing requirement for children 16 years and under to one metre, the province's director of public health announced Monday. Horacio Arruda said that in some indoor locations where people are sitting and don't need to circulate […]

Former PQ leader Boisclair reports to police after sex assault warrant issued

May 29 2020 — Giuseppe Valiante — MONTREAL — Former Parti Quebecois leader Andre Boisclair turned himself in at an east-end Montreal police station Friday after a warrant was issued for his arrest on sexual assault charges. Boisclair, 54, who was PQ leader from 2005 to 2007, emerged from the police station around 11:15 a.m. and declined to speak with reporters. News reports said he arrived […]