COVID-19: Quebec to charge unvaccinated people ‘health contribution’ tax

Quebec officials are getting tough on those who refuse to be vaccinated — without a medical reason ―against COVID-19.

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Quebec Premier François Legault said the government will levy a tax as a “consequence” for those who remain unvaccinated because they “put a very important burden on our health care network,” CBS News reported.

Quebec has had almost 93,000 cases of COVID-19 in the last seven days with 247 deaths.

About 92% of people in the province aged 12 and above have had at least one dose of a coronavirus vaccine.

But while less than 10% of the entire population have not received a coronavirus shot, 50% of intensive care patients in the province have not been vaccinated, The Associated Press reported.

To urge the remaining people to get vaccinated, Legault has proposed the tax. While the amount hasn’t been determined, Legault says it will be significant, the AP reported.

“This is why we’re looking for a health care contribution for 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 pay a new health contribution,” he said, according to CBS News. “I know the situation is tough, but we can get through this together.”

This is the latest move to encourage vaccinations in the area to try to stop the spread of COVID-19. Officials have already required remote work for jobs that can allow it, canceled activities including sports in schools, limited business capacities and instituted an overnight curfew.

Liquor and cannabis stores will also require proof of vaccination starting next week, while hair salons and shopping malls may also soon have a vaccine passport requirement.

Quebec is not alone in fining those who have refused to get vaccinated.

Greece will start fining those over the age of 60 up to 100 euros, or about $113, for every month a person has not been vaccinated. Austria will issue fines up to 3,600 euros, or about $4,000. Italy will fine those 50 and older who don’t get vaccinated up to 1,600 euros, or $1,800, if they enter their workplaces, the AP reported.

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