The premier cited an increase in COVID cases to justify the measure.
Daily new cases in the province increased from an average of 100 to 229 on August 4th. Quebec’s population is 8.485 million.
Hospitalizations and deaths have not increased and remain at a historical low.
Despite the encouraging figures, Legault announced the province will implement a domestic vaccine passport to curb what his government and the mainstream media call a “fourth wave”.
The health minister Christian Dubé is expected to announce the terms of the passport in the coming days.
Unvaccinated individuals will likely be barred from activities deemed “high-risk” by the government, such as gyms, restaurants and public activities.
Legault accused unvaccinated Quebeckers of “putting society at risk”, a misleading statement in light of recent data from the CDC showing that vaccinated individuals can carry the same viral load as the unvaccinated.
Legault said residents of the province would “lose privileges” if they are not fully vaccinated.
Quebec has vaccinated over 97% of its population aged 70 years and older.
84.3% of the population aged 12 years and older has been immunized with at least one dose of the vaccine.
Human rights proponents pointed out that the decision to segregate the Quebec society based on vaccination status appears unnecessary considering its high immunization percentage.
This measure comes as other jurisdictions are deciding to take a drastically different approach with regards to COVID. The province of Alberta announced recently it would lift all remaining restrictions by August 16th, arguing that society must learn to live with COVID as it does with other seasonal viruses.
More details to come.