In response to increasing levels of Covid-19 in the region, Canadian provincial lottery operator Loto Québec has temporarily suspended gaming activities at more of its brick-and-mortar venues, including the Casino de Charlevoix and Casino du Lac-Leamy.
The news follows Québec Premier François Legault’s October 13, 2020 press conference and will affect several of the operator’s activities in the Montérégie, Centre-du-Québec and Capitale-Nationale regions (Charlevoix included), according to the official press release.
Closures and suspended ops:
In keeping with its commitment to comply with the government-issued COVID-19 restrictions, from 12:01am Friday, October 16, Loto-Québec will be:
- Closing the Casino de Charlevoix, which since July has been operating four days a week, i.e. every Thursday to Sunday
- Closing its video lottery terminals (VLTs) in the Montérégie, Centre-du-Québec and Capitale-Nationale regions (Charlevoix included)
- Suspending Kinzo even in regions that are not on red alert (at present only one Kinzo hall is located outside of a red zone)
Casino du Lac-Leamy closed on Sunday October 11, along with its restaurants, and was followed by the closures of VLTs in the city of Gatineau and in the municipalité régionale de comté (MRC) des Collines-de-l’Outaouais.
Casino de Montréal, Casino du Lac-Leamy, Salon de jeux de Québec, Salon de jeux de Trois-Rivières, Hilton Lac-Leamy Hotel, and VLTs in Greater Montréal, Chaudière-Appalaches, Capitale-Nationale, Mauricie, City of Gatineau and regional county municipality of Collines-de-l’Outaouais all temporarilty closed on earlier in the month when the Premier announced that Québec’s two most-populous cities, Montreal and Québec City, entered into “red alert” from Oct. 1 as the second wave of COVID-19 hits.
The earlier shut-downs reportedly saw 1,350 employees laid off at Loto Québec’s Casino de Montréal and Salon de Jeux de Québec properties.
Additionally, the Montréal-headquartered Crown corporation has also suspended network bingo across the region, even in halls that have remained open. However, lottery sales, which are not affected by the new guidelines, continue across the retail network. Lottery sales returned to retail locations in May, after in March having been suspended throughout Québec as a result of the pandemic.
Loto Québec encourages its customers to exercise caution by restricting travel between regions and complying with public health directives.