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Extra mental health supports in place in grief-stricken Quebec after sword attack

QUEBEC — Extra mental health supports have been made available for those in Quebec’s capital after the city was shaken by a deadly sword attack on Halloween night.  

The province’s public security minister, Genevieve Guilbault, says she has ensured that there are adequate services in place to help those who are grieving. 

Two people were killed and five others wounded in the attack in Quebec City’s historic neighbourhood, allegedly carried out by a man wearing medieval garb who travelled there from Montreal’s north shore. 

A 24-year-old suspect has been charged with two counts of first-degree murder and five of attempted murder. 

Quebec City Mayor Regis Labeaume says the incident is particularly difficult for the city, which has not yet healed from a mass shooting outside a mosque three years ago that left six men dead. 

He urged residents to lean on one another for support in their grief. 

“This horror that took place here is adding to a mental burden that was already very heavy in this pandemic period,” Labeaume said yesterday. 

“The City of Quebec will do all it can to make our citizens as safe as possible and help them get through, psychologically, the consequences of this event.”

Residents of Old Quebec had already begun the grieving process yesterday, gathering for impromptu vigils for the victims, 61-year-old Suzanne Clermont and 56-year-old Francois Duchesne. 

A publication ban protects the identities of those who were wounded, but officials say all five are expected to survive. 

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Nov. 2, 2020.

The Canadian Press

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