François Legault amnesty homeless curfew

Legault thinks people would pose as homeless if curfew amnesty was granted

The Premier dismissed Plante’s request following the death of a homeless man.

On Tuesday, Quebec Premier François Legault dismissed a request from Montreal Mayor Valérie Plante to grant amnesty to the homeless during the ongoing curfew. Legault said that, in considering the request, he was advised that amnesty might make matters difficult for the police as people would pose as homeless if they’re out after 8 p.m. to avoid fines.

Plante made the request following the death of 51-year-old homeless man Raphaël André over the weekend, just steps away from the shelter where he used to stay. Much to the dismay of the shelter’s staff, the formerly 24/7 Open Door shelter has been forced to close overnight ever since they were briefly shut down due to a COVID-19 outbreak and plumbing issues in December.

Legault was not aware of the details of the situation with the Open Door, expressing that he thought the shelter was presently closed due to a COVID-19 outbreak. He said that if more beds for the homeless are needed in Montreal, he will see that more are added. He also reiterated his trust in police to help the homeless rather than give them fines (though there are a number of media reports about the police fining homeless people in Montreal and elsewhere in Quebec), and suggested that, by making the amnesty request, Plante is showing that she does not trust the police.

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