Halloween activities a personal decision: MOH

Little children trick-or-treating on Halloween. Getty Images

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Families have two big decisions to make ahead of this year’s Halloween, according to Haldimand Norfolk’s medical officer of health.

Dr. Shanker Nesathurai said in a press conference on Wednesday morning that individual families will have to make personal choices about handing out candy and/or allowing their children to go trick or treating at the end of the month.

“Every parent really wants to give their child the best childhood, and events like Halloween are important, it is entirely understandable for one to want their children to participate,” he said. “COVID-19 has really changed how we manage our family lives and recreational activities.”

Nesathurai reminded the media in attendance that person-to-person contact is a known way to spread the virus and with fewer people out interacting there is less possibility of spread.

While it is a personal choice, Nesathurai is hoping the provincial government will announce guidance for families to follow.

“We wait for provincial guidance on what the public policy is related to Halloween,” he said.

The doctor said he has contacted provincial representatives saying a prompt announcement would be helpful for the local health units.

“Our messaging remains the same, we are now in month seven, beginning of month eight of the pandemic and the things that we recommend in the public health service are to maintain social distancing, wash your hands, wear a mask,” said the MOH. “Stay at home unless you have a compelling reason to leave the house.”

On Oct. 14 the Haldimand Norfolk Health Unit had reported a total of 500 active COVID-19 cases since the pandemic began, with a total of eight active cases across the two counties.

Other communities have organized activities such as drive-through trick or treating at fairgrounds. Nothing of the sort has been announced in Norfolk as of yet.

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