Geneviève Guilbault reacts to question about offending anti-maskers

“There are no conspiracies, there is no dictatorial attitude here.”

Quebec Public Safety Minister Geneviève Guilbault responded to a question about anti-maskers earlier today in the press conference where Operation OSCAR was announced. Operation OSCAR will take place this weekend and involve police presence in over 1,000 bars and restaurants across the province. The question asked to Minister Guilbault was about whether or not she was concerned that the Operation would anger anti-maskers and those in the anti-mask movement, who believe that the public health measures “violate their freedom.”

Well actually, the measures that have been put in place by the government in reaction to the possibility of a second wave are not defined according to a certain paranoia with certain groups who resist everything that’s being done now. Our government is acting in a responsible and lucid manner. There is a surge in cases and a risk of a second wave in Quebec this fall if we don’t get back under control.

“The power right now is in the hands of the population, it’s in the hands of Quebecers. The great majority of them have already been compliant, and I thank them for that. There are some people perhaps who have the impression that it’s not a big deal, that it disappeared, that we’re not talking about it as much, etc. So it’s important that we gain control again and that we do all that we can to avoid the second wave. If we think that it’s a drag to wear a mask and stay two metres away, well it’s much less troublesome than closing schools, closing shops and having problems with the economy, etc.

So that is the message that I would communicate. For my colleagues and I, the only objective every day is to protect the health of Quebecers and to make sure that society can continue to function. There are no conspiracies, there is no dictatorial attitude here. To the contrary, we want to protect Quebecers.

–Geneviève Guilbault, Quebec Public Safety Minister

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