Last Updated on January 12, 2022
Quebec is announcing that it will impose a “health tax” on citizens who refuse to be injected with a COVID-19 vaccine. Quebec Premier François Legault made the announcement in Montreal on Tuesday afternoon.
“The vaccine is the key to fight the virus,” Legault said on Tuesday.
“This is why we’re looking for a health contribution from adults who refuse to be vaccinated for non-medical reasons. Those who refuse to receive their first dose in the coming weeks will have to a pay a new health contribution,” Leagult said.
The “health contribution” referenced by Legault refers to a tax on unvaccinated citizens.
Legault said he felt the ire of the vaccinated towards the unvaccinated, the latter of which he blamed for clogging up the province’s hospitals.
“Those who refuse to get the shot bring a burden to hospital staff and an important financial burden for the majority of Quebecers. It’s not true that the 10 per cent of the population will bring harm to the 90 per cent,” Legault said.
Quebec has imposed some of the strictest restrictions on its population throughout the pandemic, including two separate curfews. One curfew was imposed in the winter of 2021, and another has currently been in effect since the beginning of the month.
Last week, the province extended their vaccine passport system to liquor stores, effectively barring unvaccinated citizens from buying alcohol. This was yet another addition to a sizable list of restrictions placed on unvaccinated citizens, who are estimated to constitute roughly 10% of the province’s population.
Legault said he was working on the tax with Finance Minister Eric Girard while also reviewing the measure’s legality.
Exact details were not provided during Tuesday’s press conference, though Legault hinted that the tax would be “significant.”