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  • Kate 03:58 on 2021-01-28 Permalink | Reply  

    Was wondering, are our eternally open bagel shops now closing overnight? Or do they keep baking, but shut their doors to customers?

  • Kate 19:53 on 2021-01-27 Permalink | Reply  

    A class action suit will go forward because both Montreal and Quebec City run parking meters back to zero when a new customer arrives, rather than letting them coast on unused minutes from a previous user.

    Because people got used to finding unused minutes on the old mechanical meters, is it a good reason to continue this freebie with modern meters that operate differently?

    • Chris 20:08 on 2021-01-27 Permalink

      No, it’s not.

    • Bill Binns 20:27 on 2021-01-27 Permalink

      I hate the practice of selling the same thing to two different people (such as with hotel rooms, airplane seats, etc). The city has already been paid for that time, they shouldn’t be able to sell the same time again. The city is certainly not giving any “freebies” with the old system. They only person giving anything away is the driver who paid in advance and left early.

      That being said, it’s pretty funny that they found enough people pissed off about not being able to find a few minutes left on the meter to get a class action lawsuit going.

    • Spi 20:28 on 2021-01-27 Permalink

      It’s not simply about unused minutes left by the previous person, anyone that uses the payment terminals instead of the smartphone app to extend their parking time will be paying double for the few minutes they have remaining unless they wait for their time to completely expire before putting any more money.

    • Kate 20:31 on 2021-01-27 Permalink

      Spi, are the terminals smart enough to distinguish between “minutes being bought by the same driver” vs. “minutes being bought by a new driver”?

    • PO 21:19 on 2021-01-27 Permalink

      Interesting case. Back in the day, if you rented a movie and returned it before it’s due, the store could immediately put it on the shelf and start charging the next customer for the rental. I guess the same applies to a rental car, at least for prepaid rentals. Airlines will cancel the second leg of a flight if you miss the first.

      If I pay for 1 hour but then drive away after 30 min, I’m guessing I’m not legally entitled that space for another 30min if someone else pulls up. But that would have been true with the old meters too. As far as I’m concerned, if you leave the parking spot, you forfeit your access to it if someone else assumes it. Makes sense you’d forfeit the remaining cost too.

      Someone who leaves the spot early also isn’t entitled to a refund for unused time. That’ll probably play a role.

      Weird case. Wish this kind of thing would be thrown out.

    • Tim 21:59 on 2021-01-27 Permalink

      This lawsuit seems frivolous to me. Has the plaintiff considered that now that there is an app, there is probably far less minutes remaining because it is easy and cheap to top up minutes? I rarely overpay now as the app beeps me when 10 minutes are remaining.

    • steph 22:46 on 2021-01-27 Permalink

      The only lawsuit case I could imagine is the scenario where: Innocent Mary pays her 8$ for 2 hours of meter, and goes shopping. Malicious Joe comes along and pays for 15mins on the same spot. MrMean green onion writes Mary a ticket because the 15 mins is expired.

    • Blork 00:28 on 2021-01-28 Permalink

      Kate, to answer your question to Spi; no. The system resets when you add time, even if it’s the same person adding time.

      Regarding double-paying, if you go into a parking lot in the morning and pay the day rate, and then you leave early, there’s no reason the lot can’t charge someone else to take that place until the end of the day. How is this any different?

    • Michael Black 01:16 on 2021-01-28 Permalink

      Apparently in some places, you pay for a slot of time, and it’s connected to your license plate. So pay for half an hour here, and if it only takes ten minutes, you can park somewhere else to use the time (and top it off if you need more time).

      Never having driven a car, I have no idea how that compares.

  • Kate 19:17 on 2021-01-27 Permalink | Reply  

    A man was stabbed at Place Émilie-Gamelin Wednesday afternoon. CTV says it isn’t known whether the victim and attacker were homeless but TVA bluntly calls it an altercation between two itinerants.

  • Kate 18:40 on 2021-01-27 Permalink | Reply  

    An expert group has released a report on the whale seen in the river in spring 2020, but they have no explanation why the animal strayed into a busy river that eventually proved fatal to it. For a sea creature adapted to saltwater the river wasn’t a congenial environment, but there’s no certain explanation why it didn’t survive.

    If you wonder why we don’t know much about deep-sea creatures, imagine, this whale was right there, we don’t know why it came here, and we don’t know why it didn’t simply ride the river back down to the estuary. Do we even know whether it was male or female?

  • Kate 14:32 on 2021-01-27 Permalink | Reply  

    If I could ask anything of local media today, it would be to stop writing clickbaity headlines about the weather. CTV talks here about temperatures at –20° this weekend, and while it won’t be warm, no overnight temperature on the Environment Canada page goes so low. And spare me the “feels like” forecasts.

    • dwgs 15:38 on 2021-01-27 Permalink

      CBC radio this morning (maybe it was yesterday) plugged an upcoming piece on climate change and then literally in the next breath made a big deal about how it was going to get very cold soon with temps going all the way down to -9 or -10. I almost threw the radio across the room.

    • walkerp 16:01 on 2021-01-27 Permalink

      So with you on this.

    • Kevin 17:09 on 2021-01-27 Permalink

      I agree with you Kate.
      Some people don’t know that wind chill is not the actual temperature.

    • Clément 18:26 on 2021-01-27 Permalink

      I had a long discussion with someone who no longer uses actual temperatures, but rather the “feels like” temperature. I told him “But if you stick a thermometer outside, it will not display the feels like temperature, but the actual temperature”. His response: “That’s because it’s an old thermometer. The newer ones are calibrated to read the new temperatures.” I wish I was kidding.

    • GC 18:48 on 2021-01-27 Permalink

      What??? Oh, man.

    • dhomas 18:51 on 2021-01-27 Permalink

      @Clément It could be worse. They could use Fahrenheit. ;p

    • PO 19:01 on 2021-01-27 Permalink

      Can’t explain the discrepancy between the news outlet and Environment Canada.

      But it should be noted: wind chill is a real and important way of characterizing the outdoor temp. We’re all wet warm bodies, and the convective effect of wind is very real. – 20C with a strong wind will bring about frostbite or induce hypothermia much faster than – 20C in still air. Way faster.

      Those “feels like” forecasts usually take that into account, and maybe the wet bulb temperature, other considerations, etc. I don’t believe it’s sensationalism. It’s the meteorologists giving you a heads up so you don’t do harm to yourself.

    • j2 20:19 on 2021-01-27 Permalink

      Like I care about any temperature after 8pm.

  • Kate 14:27 on 2021-01-27 Permalink | Reply  

    The city will soon be requiring side bars on dump trucks working on its snow removal contracts. They have been recommended for a long time to protect pedestrians, and some boroughs already require them.

    • Michael Black 14:53 on 2021-01-27 Permalink

      It’s been fifteen years since Jessica Holman Price pushed her brother out of the way and slipped under a dump truck carrying snow. I know now that sidebars existed elsewhere, but I don’t remember it as an issue before her death. Her mother certainly made it an issue.

  • Kate 09:16 on 2021-01-27 Permalink | Reply  

    Virtually all news media here signed an open letter to the Quebec government asking for access to health care facilities so they can better convey the Covid epic. I’m seeing a few tweets suggesting there may be changes, but I can also understand having a policy to maintain patient privacy even in the face of a news story this big.

    • Alison Cummins 10:36 on 2021-01-27 Permalink

      Disappointed but not surprised.

    • Kate 10:38 on 2021-01-27 Permalink

      By which aspect, Alison? That they didn’t have access? Or that they may be getting access sometime soon?

    • Alison Cummins 10:43 on 2021-01-27 Permalink

      That they didn’t have access.

      The media have ways to preserve patient privacy.

    • Jack 11:00 on 2021-01-27 Permalink

      I firmly believe that all institutions should allow that level of scrutiny. Obviously not identifying patients or workers without their consent would be mandatory.
      I saw a Doc on Vice about the “worst” school in Chicago, where the admin had let a camera crew film for weeks. It was such a courageous decision by the School Board and created a context of understanding and empathy for anyone who watched, good people trying to help kids, kids who because of circumstances beyond their control were running uphill, it was tough to watch. However it was informative and courageous.
      I chuckled to think how that request would be addressed by our school boards “information” department.

  • Kate 08:52 on 2021-01-27 Permalink | Reply  

    The Gazette profiles CHK PLZ, the locally brewed resto delivery service rising as competition to Uber Eats, DoorDash, Skip the Dishes and so on.

    • Ephraim 10:01 on 2021-01-27 Permalink

      They use to do their deliveries. Very nice app, let’s you track the location of the driver the whole way. Excellent service. There is one other app out there called Fantuan, which is primarily in Chinese, but also does English which has a lot of Asian cuisine on it, including Chez Chili, Lan Zao.

      Areas included are Verdun/Angrinon, Downtown, Brossard, CDN/NDG and Chinatown.

    • Bill Binns 10:13 on 2021-01-27 Permalink

      It amazes me that new food delivery services are still popping up. Especially here in Quebec where they are being demonized for charging restaurants too much and paying drivers too little. There have to be some serious brass balls investors forking over the seed money for these operations.

    • Meezly 10:41 on 2021-01-27 Permalink

      If you read the article, there is one significant difference with CHK PLZ besides being a local startup: “the company only charges a fee of around three percent, a tenth the price of a service like UberEats.” We tried the service with Épicerie Pumpui one weekend, it was super easy.

    • Kate 10:43 on 2021-01-27 Permalink

      Bill Binns, this service is supposed to be fairer than the existing ones. Whether something local with less support will survive, we’ll see.

    • Michael Black 11:03 on 2021-01-27 Permalink

      What about the local delivery service started up last year, the name escapes me. But it was started by a few restaurants.

    • MarcG 11:16 on 2021-01-27 Permalink

      Seems like it’s app-only; no web interface for the smartphoneless among us?

    • Ephraim 11:27 on 2021-01-27 Permalink

      @MarcG – There is a web interface, if you know which restaurants are there. For example, try a google search for and you should see restaurants that use the service. Dobe & Andy, for example is there and you can order from their website without the app. (Other restaurants on there include Maestro SVP, Pamika, Paradis BBQ, Tendresse, Brit & Chips and many more.

    • SMD 11:29 on 2021-01-27 Permalink

    • DeWolf 11:37 on 2021-01-27 Permalink

      Eva is a coop that doesn’t screw over its drivers the way Uber does, so that’s an added bonus of using CHK PLZ. Their customer service is also really good. I hope they do well.

    • Michael Black 12:04 on 2021-01-27 Permalink

      Yes, it was radish, and it sounded like a means of getting the food out rather than a third party wanting to make money.

    • MarcG 12:56 on 2021-01-27 Permalink

      @Ephraim Thanks for the tip.

    • Alex 13:36 on 2021-01-27 Permalink

      We have used ChkPlz a few times, the service is great and I am happy knowing that more of my money is going to the restaurants and drivers

    • Meezly 15:33 on 2021-01-27 Permalink

      I shared this on a FB group and someone did a comparison:

      “I downloaded this app and noticed that for customers, to order the same items would come up to more $ compared to UberEats.
      Here with CHK PLZ, I would have to pay $90.26 excl. tips to the driver
      Whereas with UberEats, there is free delivery, it would come up to $80.50 (again, excl. tips to the driver).
      It’s a difference of $9.76
      It’s quite significant.
      This may deter users who would care more about the final amount to pay.”

      I replied that since the FB group’s aim is to suppot local businesses, then hopefully its members will take this into consideration and pay a little more if it means their fave restaurants will profit fairly from this transactioin!

    • Mark Côté 16:08 on 2021-01-27 Permalink

      Wonder if the Gazette’s article has led to a sudden increase in traffic that the system can’t handle… I just tried signing up, and it sends me an SMS but the app times out loading the screen where I can actually enter it.

    • Ephraim 17:41 on 2021-01-27 Permalink

      Meezly most aren’t on the larger services or if they are, are more expensive. For example Dobe & Andy charges more on UberEats than on ChkPlz.

      You can help the restaurant by doing pick up. The apps aren’t charging the restaurant a fee if you do pick up.

    • Meezly 18:27 on 2021-01-27 Permalink

      @Ephraim, that’s interesting. I have never used UberEats so I wasn’t aware of price differences in how restaurants charge.

      Yes, my household has been almost 100% pick up, esp. in fairer weather as we can bike. We are carless so much more limited in the winter. Last week, I wanted to order a Filipino kamayan for my husband’s birthday but the restaurant was way across town. So I contacted the restaurant to see what my delivery options were – the owner confirmed that UberEats gouges them 25-30%. Since I was planning to order on a Sunday, which is normally a slower night, the owner ended up offering to deliver the meal himself. Win-win!

      So always try to contact the restaurant directly first – you just never know what your alternative options are until you try it.

    • Raymond Lutz 18:35 on 2021-01-27 Permalink

    • Joey 18:37 on 2021-01-27 Permalink

      Uber Eats, unlike the morally superior Chk Plz, offers loads of promos, discounts, etc., that presumably come out of the restaurant owners’ pocket – but make the service more attractive to customers.

    • dhomas 18:51 on 2021-01-27 Permalink

      I used EVA exclusively after Teo went under, though I’ve had little need for private transit since the pandemic. They are quite responsive to user feedback, and have implemented some of the changes I recommended in the past. The last time I used it was in January 2020, I think, and the driver at the time was driving for both Uber and EVA as EVA did not yet have much volume. They much preferred EVA’s model, though (and I can’t remember why).
      I will definitely check out CHK PLZ to encourage a local company. I currently use the 3 mainstream services (UberEats, DoorDash, and Skip the Dishes) in alternating fashion. If you don’t use one for a while, they beg you to come back with coupons. I used to like Foodora as they used bike couriers and used them quite a bit when I worked downtown, but they’ve since folded.
      Also, when this whole food delivery craze started a while back, I was reminded of another local company that did this long before it was popular: A La Carte Express. I didn’t like their service when I used it (a long time ago) since it was clunky and expensive. That said, I’m surprised they didn’t improve their position when it got more mainstream. They could have been Montreal’s Skip the Dishes (based in Winnipeg).
      Finally, as others have mentioned, you can save both yourself and the restaurant some money if you call them directly. There’s an Indian place close to my house that I order from that offers free delivery for orders over 20$ if you’re in a 5KM radius, for example. You get free delivery and the restaurant doesn’t have to give their pound of flesh to UberEats. It’s a _teensy_ bit less convenient than using an app, but it’s so much better if you want your favourite restaurant to stick around. I don’t think ghost kitchens can become a thing in Montreal, though. One of the complaints about the food truck regulations was that they needed to be associated to an actual restaurant (“cuisine de production”, in the rulebook). I don’t think these delivery apps will be able to skirt these rules, either.

    • MarcG 19:14 on 2021-01-27 Permalink

      The problem with ordering directly from a restaurant is contactless payment is often not possible, or at least wasn’t last spring when I last attempted it.

    • Ephraim 20:38 on 2021-01-27 Permalink

      I think Doordash has the lowest percentage and pays the drivers better. But I don’t have the exact numbers. Some provinces stepped in and put in a cap. They all put in a temporary no charge for pick-up for a few months. Personally, we try to do what’s best for the restaurants, as we want them to be there when this is all over. We’ve called in orders and picked up. But we have used the services every once in a while. We tend to choose place where we can order a much larger order and use it for a number of meals. Having an air fryer is helpful with that.

      As for ghost kitchens, there are a few restaurants that do it themselves. Diablo’s took over the space that was Rubs on Prince Arthur and runs a few ghost restaurants out of the space. But Kinka uses a number of names including Tokyo Sando. See

  • Kate 08:31 on 2021-01-27 Permalink | Reply  

    A woman passenger was killed Monday night when the driver of a car, fleeing an apparently minor road accident in Montreal East, collided at speed with a cement mixer truck.

  • Kate 08:26 on 2021-01-27 Permalink | Reply  

    Quebec has launched an investigation into Montreal’s biggest school service centre, the CSSDM, which replaced the CSDM less than a year ago. What’s striking here is what’s not being told – just that the inquiry is into “l’administration, l’organisation et le fonctionnement” of this entity, which was spawned by the CAQ because they didn’t find the old school board format efficient enough.

  • Kate 20:35 on 2021-01-26 Permalink | Reply  

    McGill, which for a fancy university has trouble making smart decisions, has evicted some students from residence on short notice for breaking Covid rules.

    • walkerp 22:40 on 2021-01-26 Permalink

      Worth reading the article; it is a complicated situation. That being said, both parties here suck. The kids are entitled and clearly come from privileged situations; they will survive. On the other hand, McGill is clearly terrible. Bad policy, bad implementation of the policy. Instead of setting up proper support system it’s just compliance and punishment. You need to put a system in place that makes it easy for young people like this to do the right thing and to give them support when they start to err. Their parents are paying enough for it.

      This is health policy, not protestant ethics. You kick those kids out and you risk more community spread.

    • Joey 12:25 on 2021-01-27 Permalink

      Regardless of who’s right or wrong, this is a terrible situaiton to be in for a unviersity that prides itself on the all-in out-of-province student experience.

  • Kate 20:31 on 2021-01-26 Permalink | Reply  

    A judge has given the homeless a break from the curfew, but only until February 5.

    • H. John 09:22 on 2021-01-27 Permalink

      Lionel Carmant, Minister for Health and Social Services, tweeted this morning that the government will not appeal and “Le gouvernement modifiera le décret afin d’exempter les personnes en situation d’itinérance du couvre-feu.”

    • Kate 10:36 on 2021-01-27 Permalink

      Thanks, H. John.

  • Kate 14:14 on 2021-01-26 Permalink | Reply  

    The plan for a REM station at the airport is still in limbo as governments pass the hot potato.

    • Matt G 16:54 on 2021-01-26 Permalink

      Come on, guys. That airport spur was key to the REM. I can’t imagine them letting that tunnel lead so close yet so far to destination. It’s already pretty stupid that the link to Dorval VIA station is not part of the plan and that a ghost station already exists below the terminal building. How many times can they screw this one up?

    • Daniel D 17:33 on 2021-01-26 Permalink

      I lose track of this pantomime. Did the CDPQ originally agree to fund the spur, or is that funding still in place and it’s now purely a dispute between the airport and governments?

      Matt makes a good point: It was already beyond lunacy the airport didn’t have a rail connection to downtown given the history of this thing. We’re now heading to one step beyond lunacy it seems.

      Also, going back long before the time I arrived in Montreal, wasn’t one of the reasons Mirabel failed due to a lack of a rail link?

    • Clee 17:43 on 2021-01-26 Permalink

      Trudeau doesn’t want to pay for Trudeau airport anymore?

    • david49 19:11 on 2021-01-26 Permalink

      They’ll tunnel it, likely to Dorval circle, then let it sit for a few years until air traffic rebounds sufficiently for the airport authority to contribute their share.

    • ant6n 20:44 on 2021-01-26 Permalink

      As I understand it, the station was supposed to be part of the REM (i.e. paid by CDPQ, Quebec, Feds). Then CDPQInfra proposed a very barebones design that the airport deemed inadquate. So CDPQInfra said “build it yourself then”, so they got the expensive station off their books. There´s been a bunch of these schemes to shove off costs outside the REM. Because really, CDPQInfra is supposedly taking on the risks, that`s why their getting a higher share of the profits as part of the REM contract (/s). I also guess the airport station won’t be part of the assets of the REM, so CDPQInfra will still maintain their 51% controlling ownership stake, without having to pay for this particular cost overrun.

      I do wonder, if the airport has to pay for the station, whether the airport will actually own it. And then I wonder, wether the REM will have to pay infrastructure access fees to have trains stop there. I kind of doubt it.

  • Kate 01:43 on 2021-01-26 Permalink | Reply  

    Two men, one of them a cop, were injured Monday evening in a brawl in the SQDC outlet on Queen Mary. A man who had attacked a store employee then a policeman was subdued by a blow from another policeman’s baton. The BEI is investigating.

    Update: Tuesday morning, it’s reported that three men were knocked out in this cannabis store incident, including two cops. The effort to subdue the instigator with a baton was unsuccessful, according to this piece, but he ended up unconscious somehow. A CP report mentions pepper spray. At least no shots were fired.

    • walkerp 07:15 on 2021-01-26 Permalink

      He should have ordered the indica.

    • qatzelok 12:16 on 2021-01-26 Permalink

      “There were no Hacidim involved, so I don’t see why this is even news.”

      (This blog is approaching 50% Hacidim content.)

    • Kate 12:18 on 2021-01-26 Permalink

      qatzelok, I begin to think you have a masochistic desire to get banned.

    • Bill Binns 14:28 on 2021-01-26 Permalink

      I didn’t think Montreal cops carried batons. Seems like we would be hearing a lot more baton news if they all had them. I’m a fan though. Nice non-lethal alternative to guns. Probably safer than Tasers too.

    • Tee Owe 14:36 on 2021-01-26 Permalink

      Somebody should invent a cannabis spray 🙂

    • Kate 16:48 on 2021-01-26 Permalink

      Bill Binns, they don’t often get mentioned, but I gather SPVM cops have an extensible baton, as mentioned in this story from two years ago: “le policier frappe l’homme avec son bâton télescopique.”

    • Bill Binns 10:05 on 2021-01-27 Permalink

      @Kate – Ah, well that explains why the baton “failed to subdue”. It’s like whacking someone with a car antenna. Hard to believe now but the cops where I grew up were issued these little leather pouches filled with sand (in addition to the hickory club). Not a lot of “cop shoots unarmed man” stories back then but lots of mugshots with eyes swollen closed.

    • dwgs 11:33 on 2021-01-27 Permalink

      Bill those are called saps or blackjacks, they were also sometimes filled with lead shot. Hit someone at the base of the skull with one and you knock them out instantly. Nasty. And the batons are not like hitting someone with a car antenna. If you get hit with one in the side of the knee you are going down and staying down.

    • CE 12:56 on 2021-01-27 Permalink

      Would the cops hit the person with the bag of sand or throw the sand in their eyes? I’ve seen Montreal cops carrying billy clubs on their belts before. I’ve been on the receiving end of one before, not fun.

      I found it interesting and unsettling to see cops in the US holding clubs that looked like big pieces of wood at BLM protests. The optics of it seemed weird to me.

    • Kate 14:57 on 2021-01-27 Permalink

      A sock-shaped leather bag filled with dense sand has the advantage that it sort of wraps to the shape of head and conveys all your force to your victim. Same if you put lead shot in there. I don’t know whether they’re legal, but it’s hard to make a leather bag and a few handfuls of sand illegal.

  • Kate 23:29 on 2021-01-25 Permalink | Reply  

    Forty-four students living in McGill residences have tested positive.

    I’m surprised the residences are still allowed to operate. But, as I commented below, McGill is a virtual city state.

    • david1000 00:33 on 2021-01-26 Permalink

      I mean, I get what you’re saying, but evicting people for speculative reasons (they live in a student residence and therefore must be put into the street, or they’ll get covid) is pretty iffy, no?

    • walkerp 07:13 on 2021-01-26 Permalink

      I’m surprised they were let in in the first place. Don’t they all have to vacate at the end of the year?

    • jeather 09:58 on 2021-01-26 Permalink

      I think the ones who were evicted were evicted for having/attending illegal parties.

    • dwgs 10:21 on 2021-01-26 Permalink

      The only reason residences were opened was to bring in revenue. Only 1st years can stay in residence and there are no in person undergrad classes so why the hell would you spend tens of thousands of dollars to send your kid to live in rez this year? A friend who works in rez tells me that the kids who were supposed to self isolate at the beginning of the year, after holidays etc largely did not do so (shockingly, 18 year olds show poor judgement). I am assuming that at least some of the kids banished until Feb. 1 must be positive so why are they being sent out into the community instead of being locked in their rooms? The street outside of RVC is packed with media trucks this morning and McGill hates hates hates negative publicity. Wouldn’t be surprised if one or two heads roll over this.

    • Kate 11:06 on 2021-01-26 Permalink

      Thanks for the report from the ground, dwgs.

    • Alison Cummins 13:00 on 2021-01-26 Permalink

      For many people, an important part of the university experience is leaving home and learning to function independently. Or leaving home and giving your parents some peace. I know that I only survived being sixteen by knowing that after graduation I would never have to sleep under the same roof as my father again. He himself experienced something similar, spending his college summers hitchhiking across the US because he couldn’t go home.

      That was was within the range of normal age-appropriate needing to leave home. I know someone who was literally sent to live at boarding school so that his father wouldn’t murder him. I know several women who were subjected to ongoing sexual assault by their fathers. I know other people who were sent away so they wouldn’t have to watch a parent die of cancer. So just staying in the parental home is not an option for all young adults. If they had budgeted for moving out as part of the university transition anyway it’s a way of doing it that looks and feels normal.

      Plus, young adults are not at high personal risk from covid. My-sister-the-doctor states that in her province, nobody under 30 has ever been hospitalized for covid. In her opinion, leaving home and partying in a hot zone could even be a good way to develop immunity from covid away from older people at higher risk.

      While there is still direct risk to young people the greatest risk is of young people acting as vectors. As a person in her fifties I assume all young people exhale covid all the time. I know young people whose parents require them to get tested before visiting the family home, for instance at winter break.

      It’s not insane. It’s just really tedious. Students don’t get to meet their classmates unless they happen to be in residence together and discover it by accident. McGill seems to be handling remote learning exceptionally badly. I have been told that intro classes with 200 students have message groups set up for interaction which are essentially a giant text message where you attempt to chat with 199 other participants identified only by phone number.

      I understand why McGill hasn’t set up Facebook groups for them, and I understand why an intro to physics student wouldn’t feel empowered to create one or want to moderate one. But there is good forum software out there and I don’t understand why they don’t deploy it and train TAs to act as monitors.

    • Kate 16:55 on 2021-01-26 Permalink

      Alison, I take your point about some students needing to get away from their families, but I was simply surprised that McGill would be operating residences when no in-person classes were being held.

    • Alison Cummins 20:15 on 2021-01-26 Permalink


      Agreed! I was responding to dwgs.

      Apparently they’re open but at half-capacity and strictly policed. (? I’m very short on details.) A young person of my acquaintance was dying of solitude in a McGill dorm and found freedom with a roomie and an Airbnb.

    • dwgs 12:01 on 2021-01-27 Permalink

      Alison, you make excellent points about reasons kids would want to escape, I can definitely relate to a few of those. However, the vast majority of these kids don’t fall into those circumstances and my point was simply that if you don’t absolutely have to then this particular time is a terrible one to send the kid away. Unless you look at it like the chicken pox parties that people used to have for their kids. Covid camp if you will. Residences are only half full but they’re not being strictly policed. At least they weren’t before this.

    • Alison Cummins 13:13 on 2021-01-27 Permalink

      dwgs, the vast majority of young adults aren’t being sent away to protect them from being murdered by a parent, correct.

      But leaving home is something that happens pretty consistently around this age. I don’t think this is random. I think most young adults need to, and I think many families will be miserable if the young adults are prevented from leaving.

      If your family is one where all generations can live harmoniously in the same house indefinitely while being their best selves, great. I know those families exist.

      I think *not* being one of those families is also normal. It’s *not* insane for a young adult to need to try their wings. People make the best decisions they can with the choices available to them. If someone is making an effort to help a young person develop independence under difficult circumstances, I don’t see why we need to assume they are insane.

    • dwgs 15:46 on 2021-01-27 Permalink

      Yes but Covid. Why send the kid this year when they can’t even experience frosh, actual classes, meeting profs in person etc etc etc? Why not keep them at home for first year since they’ll be doing all their coursework online anyway? It’s not like they’re getting the real Mtl experience spending all their time in their room. That way they can come for second year and get the real deal.
      I was pushed out of the nest at 17 and am in the process of pushing an 18 year old out but we’re holding off until late summer when hopefully things are more stable.

    • Alison Cummins 03:53 on 2021-01-28 Permalink

      I left at 16 and it wasn’t a minute too soon.

      You’re right, they won’t have the benefits of meeting professors and fellow students in person. It’s a HUGE loss.

      Still, they get the benefits of making their own decisions, unsupervised, for months at a time. If they’re not in a dorm with a meal plan they get to learn all about running a household, budgeting for groceries and what happens when you don’t do the dishes.

      This is also HUGE. It’s too bad they can’t get both, but if the family can afford it and the young adult would benefit, it’s not insane.

      Each family will weigh costs and benefits individually. A reasonably happy and responsible young adult spending another year in the family home is not insane. Putting off university entirely until it can be experienced in the flesh is not insane. And neither is hustling a young adult out ASAP to start figuring out the whole adulting thing with support. Everyone’s a little different.

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