The following message was sent by phone to subscribers of the CSL emergency alert system on Wednesday, September 16, 2020, at 8pm.

This is mayor Mitchell Brownstein with a brief update on the current Covid-19 situation. 

Firstly, let me wish all those celebrating the Jewish holiday of Rosh Hashana a very happy and healthy new year.  

This week I participated in an official meeting with Dr. Lawrence Rosenberg and the MNAS and Mayors for the area he represents. He’s the President and CEO of the CIUSSS West-Central Montreal healthcare network including the Jewish General Hospital. He spoke about the increase in the number of COVID-19 cases in Côte Saint-Luc.  

Over the past few months, we’ve been successful at reducing the number of new cases in Côte Saint-Luc. But this recent rise is a serious concern—especially as we approach the Jewish holidays and as cooler weather will keep more people indoors.  

These are unusual times calling for creative solutions. Here is how we’ve been working behind the scenes to help. 

Over the past few weeks, we have met repeatedly to find a way to accommodate outdoor services safely. We’ve met with representatives from synagogues, Federation CJA, our Member of the National Assembly, the public health authority, the police and others—all in an effort to coordinate planning.  

We’ve offered our public spaces to synagogues, in order to reduce the number of people congregating indoors. 

We’re not alone at finding creative solutions. Residents are getting creative, too. Many of those celebrating Rosh Hashana will avoid indoor meals in favour of small backyard gatherings with people close to them. These are good decisions and for this I thank you. 

In spite of these creative solutions, there are still risks. Your health and safety is our greatest concern, so we encourage everyone participating at services to keep a physical distance, wash their hands frequently, and wear masks—even when gathered outdoors.   

At the meeting with Dr. Rosenberg, he recommended that anyone over the age of 70 exercise extra caution and consider avoiding large gatherings. Obviously, this is a personal decision and a difficult one. But I want you to be aware of what the health experts are telling me. 

I wish you all good health and happiness now and always.