Police issue more warnings than fines for health measure violations in Quebec bars, other establishments
A Surete du Quebec cruiser is seen in this file photo. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jacques Boissinot)
MONTREAL -- Quebec provincial police (SQ) issued 2,306 verbal warnings related to public health guidelines between Sept. 14 and 27, the force said on Twitter on Monday.
Montreal police (SPVM) followed on Twitter saying the force received 544 calls related to compliance with health measures to combat COVID-19. In addition, the SPVM inspected 387 locations including 274 licensed establishments.
"SPVM police officers will always give priority to raising awareness," wrote the force on its Twitter account. "A report can, however, be issued if the infringement persists after a warning."
The SQ issued seven tickets in total after police visited 944 licensed establishments and 1,360 other locations.
The SQ tweeted that under the public health decree, "the police must issue a warning and give the citizen a reasonable opportunity to comply with the decree. If the citizen refuses to comply, a statement of offense can then be served."
The Laval police said it stepped up its surveillance in licensed establishments over the weekend, making about 60 targeted visits. Although only three offense reports were drawn up, the police said they observed several offenses relating to the number of people sitting at a table, the distance between the tables, in lines and between clients. They also noticed people who weren't wearing face masks and businesses with inadequate client records.
In a news release issued Monday morning, the Laval police said "a large majority of businesses and citizens in Laval are participating in the collective effort to limit the spread of COVID-19."