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Quebec curfew infringing on Canadian charter of rights: Canadian Constitution Foundation

The foundation's director of litigation says there needs to be scientific evidence showing that an 8 p.m. curfew limits the spread of COVID-19.
Francois Legault
Quebec Premier Francois Legault / Canadian Press

The Canadian Constitution Foundation (CCF) says the curfew imposed by the Quebec government, as a means to slow the spread of COVID-19, is infringing on the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms.

According to CCF Director of Litigation Christine Van Geyn, in order for the curfew to be considering constitutional, the restrictions need to be minimally impairing or demonstrated to be justified.

However, she feels the curfew, which bars residents from leaving their homes between 8 p.m. and 5 a.m., is not minimally impairing, as she says there are numerous measures the government could have taken prior to enforcing the province-wide curfew. 

"There would need to be a rational connection between limiting our freedom to move about after 8 p.m. in Quebec and stopping transmission of a virus," Van Geyn explains. "In my view, there is no such rational connection because the government has itself said it's more about sending a signal than stopping transmission."

She adds, scientific evidence suggesting an 8 p.m. curfew would in fact reduce the spread of the novel coronavirus also needs to be present.

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