Quebec's summer camps call on government to give them the go-ahead
MONTREAL -- Quebec’s overnight summer camps are still waiting to hear if they'll be able to reopen this summer -- and families are waiting too.
The Association des camps du Québec (ACQ) is calling for the provincial government to “quickly put an end to the uncertainty surrounding the reopening of the summer camps" and give them approval.
With the need to hire summer staff before they look for other work, many camps say it's already too late.
"That deadline is long behind us at this point, so it really has to be in the coming days that we hear that we have the green light to move forward," said ACQ vice-president Shauna Joyce. "Otherwise, staff will continue to look for other opportunities for this upcoming season and that will limit the amount of campers that we can host on our sites this summer, even if we're permitted to operate."
The ACQ said one-third of camps have already determined they will not be able to comply with new health directives in time to open, while another third are undecided due to the uncertainly.
The group says summer camps are a key part of well-being for many Quebec families.
"In this special year, we firmly believe that camps are part of the solution to the mental health issues facing our youth and the stress experienced by so many families. But to be successful, we need the support of the government," said ACQ executive director Éric Beauchemin.
The association is calling on the government to give them the go-ahead, and is also asking for $10 million to support the province’s summer camps.
It said $4 million of that requested funding would be dedicated to day camps, which have already been approved to open this summer.
In an email to CTV News, a spokesperson for the ministry of health said a decision is coming soon.
- With files from CTV News Montreal's Angela Mackenzie