Quebec to impose “well being contribution” tax on those that refuse COVID vaccines for non-medical causes

Leaders of Quebec, Canada, are planning to impose a tax on adults within the province who refuse to get vaccinated towards COVID-19 for non-medical causes, Quebec Premier François Legault introduced Tuesday. The tax, he stated, is a “consequence” for unvaccinated individuals who “put an important burden on our well being care community.” 

Legault stated the choice comes because the province continues to see a rise in hospitalizations.

“In case you have a look at what’s taking place in different nations or different states, everyone seems to be looking for the answer,” he stated. “…Proper now, these individuals, they put an important burden on our well being care community. And I believe it is regular the vast majority of the inhabitants is asking that there be a consequence.” 

Quebec has been hit the toughest of Canada’s provinces and territories, in response to the nation’s authorities. There have been practically 93,000 formally reported circumstances within the province within the final seven days, in response to the federal government’s database, and 247 deaths. 

Roughly 92% of individuals in Quebec ages 12 and older has obtained at the least one dose of COVID vaccine, in response to the province’s well being information. Vaccination, Legault stated, is the “key to battle the virus.”

“This is the reason we’re in search of a well being care contribution for adults who refuse to be vaccinated for non-medical causes. Those that refuse to obtain their first dose within the coming weeks must pay a brand new well being contribution,” he stated. “I do know the state of affairs is hard, however we are able to get via this collectively.” 

The quantity of the tax has not but been determined, Legault stated in a Fb put up explaining the choice, “however it is going to be a major quantity.” 

On proceed de voir au Québec, comme ailleurs dans le monde, une augmentation des hospitalisations.
Actuellement, notre…

Posted by François Legault on Tuesday, January 11, 2022

The tax is simply the most recent measure put in place to attempt to curb the unfold of the virus in Quebec. The province has additionally mandated distant work for any place that may enable it, canceled sports activities and extracurricular actions in faculties, closed secondary faculties, restricted retailer and restaurant capacities, and restricted personal gatherings, amongst different issues. There may be additionally a curfew in place from 10 p.m. to five a.m. 

Quebec additionally has a vaccine passport system that enables these aged 13 and up who’re “adequately protected” towards COVID to entry sure locations for non-essential actions. However Legault stated, “We have now to go additional.” 

“Proper now, it is a query additionally of equity for the 90% of the inhabitants who made some sacrifices,” he stated. “I believe we owe them this sort of measure.” 

Legault tweeted in French that unvaccinated adults signify 10% of the inhabitants however half of COVID hospitalizations in intensive care. 

The announcement got here a day after the province’s well being director, Dr. Horacio Arruda, resigned from his place, which he held for greater than a decade, in response to the Canadian Broadcasting Company. Arruda stepped down within the wake of elevated criticism over officers’ pandemic response. 

Arruda was criticized for supporting indoor gatherings of as much as 20 individuals via the vacation season, in response to CBC, and for not offering proof for the advantages of the brand new in a single day curfew. 

Days earlier than his departure, the province introduced that PCR testing hit such a excessive demand that the Ministry of Well being and Social Companies halted PCR testing for most people. As of January 4, assessments have been prioritized for these deemed most at-risk of an infection, together with these in hospitals and different well being care amenities, these in detention facilities, and other people in First Nations and Inuit communities. Those that are symptomatic however do not get precedence are permitted to make use of fast assessments out there in pharmacies, and have been urged to isolate. 

Legault stated Tuesday that regardless of the criticism, he stands by Arruda’s steering all through the pandemic. 

“The suggestions he made with the knowledge he had when he made these suggestions, I believe that it was coming from after consulting different specialists,” Legault stated. “There are some benefits to someone new after 22 months as a result of it is a very heavy burden to have.” 

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