"Let's take care of each other ": lifting of lockdown begins for the Société de transport de Montréal.
On May 25, the Société de transport de Montréal will start handing out face coverings to customers. This initiative was announced on May 8, when the STM introduced its lockdown lifting plan.
With the support of the Quebec government, 300,000 reusable face coverings will be handed out across the Montreal Metropolitan Area during the first wave of distribution, which will go until the end of June. Further waves are planned for the coming months, based on supply and how the situation develops. The plan is to hand out about 1.5 million face coverings in total.
Face coverings will first be distributed in hotspots and more crowded areas. Employees will distribute them by hand, wearing visors, masks and gloves, in accordance with public health guidelines.
During the first week, the face coverings will be handed out during the morning peak period at métro stations and terminuses serving hotspots (Honoré-Beaugrand, Henri-Bourassa, St-Michel, Pie-IX, Radisson, Sauvé, Joliette, Crémazie, Laurier, Viau, Cadillac, Langelier, Jarry, De l’Église) and the busiest stations (Côte-Vertu, Angrignon, Vendôme, Bonaventure, Plamondon, Berri-UQAM, Snowdon, Lionel-Groulx, Jolicoeur, Jean-Talon, Guy-Concordia, Fabre, Frontenac, Beaubien, Sherbrooke, Champs-de-Mars, Rosemont, Papineau, Mont-Royal, Villa-Maria, Côte-Ste-Catherine, Verdun, Du Collège, Parc, Monk).
In addition, ten thousand face coverings will be mailed to STM paratransit customers.
Quebec’s public health institute strongly recommends that face coverings be worn on public transit and in places where it is not possible to maintain a sufficient physical distance from others.
Wearing face coverings alone is not enough to stop the spread of COVID-19 and should be combined with other public health and hygiene measures, including frequent handwashing, respiratory etiquette and physical distancing.
To clean the face coverings, put them in the washing machine right away, wash in hot water and let dry completely.
Customers encouraged to prepare for their return to the network
The STM is ready to welcome back the customers who will be gradually returning to the network. Since the start of the pandemic, the STM has followed recommendations from public health authorities and the CNESST and has continuously implemented measures to better protect customers and employees.
Users will notice significant changes during their trips, including new signage, ground markings, informative posters and audio messages. Many elements are already in place and adjustments will be made as time goes on.
In light of all these changes, the STM would like to reassure customers that it will provide them with support and guidance over the coming weeks to keep their transit experience positive, despite this unprecedented situation. Customers can count on our employees’ support, and a communications campaign, “Let’s take care of each other,” will be launched Monday to reach out to customers who have not taken the bus or métro in a while and help them prepare for our new transit reality.
The STM’s COVID-19 prevention webpage (http://www.stm.info/en/info/advice/good-manners-when-using-public-transit/covid-19-coronavirus-prevention#id_premiere) has a wealth of important information about everything from trip planning to guidelines to follow and measures implemented by the STM. The STM strongly encourages customers to check this page beforehand if this is their first time taking the bus and métro since the start of the pandemic.
We all have a role to play, whether that means implementing special measures, following guidelines or adopting new behaviours.