Schools, government offices to shut Monday as P.E.I. declares holiday for Queen's funeral

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Queen Elizabeth died Thursday at the age of 96.  (Eddie Mulholland/Reuters - image credit)
Queen Elizabeth died Thursday at the age of 96. (Eddie Mulholland/Reuters - image credit)

Monday, Sept. 19 has been declared a one-time statutory holiday on P.E.I. to commemorate the life of Queen Elizabeth II, the province announced on Tuesday.

The day will be like other statutory holidays as outlined in the Employment Standards Act for all provincially regulated employees, the province said in a news release.

The declaration means provincial government offices, as well as schools operated by the Public Schools Branch and la Commission scolaire de langue française, will be closed for the day of the Queen's funeral.

"The province also recognizes that many essential services and some employers will need to continue to operate as scheduled and the Employment Standards Act has provisions for those employees who work on statutory holidays," the news release said.

A provincial spokesman said private businesses that choose to open can do so, as they do on Canada Day — but they will have to pay their staff accordingly.

Earlier on Tuesday, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau had declared the day a federal statutory holiday. "Federally regulated employers are welcomed to follow suit, but they are not required to do so," a tweet from one of his cabinet ministers later clarified.

Official commemorative ceremony

The news release on Tuesday also said the province is organizing an official commemorative ceremony at St. Peter's Cathedral Church in Charlottetown at 2 p.m. AT on Monday.

Due to limited space, the official commemorative ceremony will be by invitation only. It will be live-streamed, however, and Islanders can watch it on Government of P.E.I. channels.

Queen Elizabeth II died on Thursday at the age of 96, after 70 years on the throne. Her oldest son is now King Charles III.