Quebec Premier Francois Legault tests negative for COVID-19 but will self-isolate until Sept. 28
MONTREAL -- Quebec Premier François Legault says he and his wife have tested negative for COVID-19 but will continue to self-isolate for another week to make it two weeks total since their contact with an infected person -- Conservative leader Erin O'Toole.
Legault announced late Friday that he'd get a test after he met one-on-one with O'Toole on Monday and learned five days later that O'Toole has the virus.
The two sat down together during O'Toole's first official visit to a sitting premier. They had a substantial meeting in downtown Montreal.
Legault first said he wouldn't get a test. On Wednesday, when O'Toole learned that one of his staffers had the virus and said he and his family would all get tests, Legault said that public health guidelines dictated that the contact with O'Toole only required that he monitor himself for symptoms.
He changed his mind, he said on Twitter on Friday night, after O'Toole tested positive.
In his tweet he said, in French, that "since Mr. O’Toole tested positive for COVID-19, I will, as a precaution, get tested and self-isolate at home."
"No one is immune from contagion. Take care of yourself."
On Saturday, when he announced his negative result -- only about 18 hours later -- Legault said that the two-week self-isolation period required by public health guidelines will keep him at home until Sept. 28.
"As a preventive measure, Public Health suggests remaining isolated for two weeks after contact with a carrier of the virus," Legault was quoted in a press release.
"As I had contact with Mr. Erin O’Toole last Monday, I will therefore remain isolated at home for an additional period of one week until September 28."
Everyone has their part to play in fighting the virus, he wrote. "I count on all Quebecers to respect the rules and health measures."
Legault said he will continue to work remotely while at home, and that Deputy Premier Genevieve Guilbault will replace him at Question Period this week and during press conferences on COVID-19.
Since Monday, Legault had been in contact with a who's-who of political figures in and outside of Quebec -- sometimes without a mask, especially when giving press conferences.
He attended Quebec's legislature after the session reopened on Tuesday, and was in the Salon Bleu for Question Period.
He participated in various press conferences, including an hour-long one, also on Tuesday, alongside Quebec's health minister and the province's director of public health.
Legault also met in person with three other premiers on Friday in Ottawa: Ontario's Doug Ford, Manitoba's Brian Pallister, and Alberta's Jason Kenney. Other premiers joined the meeting virtually.