Quebec threatens COVID fines as researchers question if penalties deter behaviour


MONTREAL — A new report by researchers at the University of Toronto and Carleton University says there’s little evidence indicating the threat of fines is encouraging Canadians to follow COVID-19 rules.

Researchers Alex Luscombe and Alexander McClelland say despite the lack of evidence, provincial governments across Canada are increasingly using fines as a tool to ensure compliance.

Earlier today, Quebec Deputy Premier Genevieve Guilbault threatened to fine restaurant owners who defy the province’s partial lockdown orders that shut dining areas.

She says the government adopted a decree last week allowing police to fine customers found in businesses that had been ordered closed.

Quebec reported 1,029 new cases of COVID-19 today and 33 more deaths attributed to the novel coronavirus.

The province has reported a total of 109,918 cases of COVID-19 and 6,350 deaths linked to the virus.