The Haldimand-Norfolk Health Unit is strongly recommending that families not engage in traditional trick-or treating activities this Halloween to prevent the spread of COVID-19 in the community.
Like many health units, the HNHU recommends residents mark the holiday with at-home activities, such as a scavenger hunt or movie night, and show off costumes on virtual visits with friends and family.
“I encourage everyone to get creative and find a safe way to celebrate the day,” says Dr. Shanker Nesathurai, Medical Officer of Health. “By remaining vigilant, we will reduce the spread of the virus in our community and protect those most vulnerable to the consequences of COVID-19 infection.”
Indoor gathering limits remain restricted to no more than 10 people. The Health Unit is strongly recommending that Halloween parties be avoided.
While traditional trick-or-treating activities are strongly discouraged, if your family must take part, there are a number of precautions families should take:
- Only go out with members of your own household
- Only trick-or-treat outside
- Wear a face mask (a costume mask is not a substitute for a proper face covering)
- Avoid congregating or lingering on doorsteps
- Maintain a minimum of 2m distance if in a line-up
- Avoid high-touch surfaces and objects
- Use hand sanitizer frequently, and wash hands immediately upon returning home
- Those handing out treats should wear a face covering
- Do no leave treats in a common bowl or bucket
- Consider using tongs to hand out treats
- Turn off your porch light if you are sick or self-isolating
The Health Unit provides information and updates at hnhu.org/covid-19.
See also: Earlier this week, Norfolk Mayor and Board of Health Chair Kristal Chopp shared a video on the “discovery” of a long-lost tradition she hopes will help young people safely experience the magic of Halloween this year.