It looks like trick-or-treating is off the table for Halloween this year.
According to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), adults and children should change their typical Halloween plans to minimize the risk of spreading the virus.
On Monday, the US health agency provided new guidelines on its website to suggest which activities are low risk and which are high risk.
“Many traditional Halloween activities can be high-risk for spreading viruses,” the agency said on its website. “There are several safer, alternative ways to participate in Halloween.”
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Lower-risk activities include pumpkin carving within your household, or doing it outside at a safe distance from neighbours and friends. Families can also have a movie night or a virtual costume contest.
Higher-risk activities include trick-or-treating, attending crowded costume parties indoors, going to indoor haunted houses, participating in hayrides or trace rides with people not in your household, and travelling to a rural community for a fall festival.
The CCD does note that trick-or-treating can be safer if packages of candies are wrapped in bags and left on the front doorstep for other families to take, in order to limit contact. And if attending a costume party outdoors, it must be physically distanced.
In Ontario, Premier Doug Ford said he is “nervous” about Halloween and would prefer children don’t trick-or-treat this year.
On September 9, BC’s top doctor, Bonnie Henry, said that some safe alternatives could be done.
“I think we can rescue Halloween,” she said. “We should be looking at doing it outdoors, in small groups, and I would encourage groups to get together and have little areas where they can have things pre-packaged.”
Daily Hive has reached out to Health Canada on when they will release their own guidelines for the holiday.