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Canada Trick or Treat? Experts divided on letting kids go out on Halloween due to COVID risk

11:15  30 october  2020
11:15  30 october  2020 Source:   msn.com

COVID-19: Ontario reports 821 new cases, 78 new cases in Ottawa

  COVID-19: Ontario reports 821 new cases, 78 new cases in Ottawa What you need to know, at a glance Ontario reported 821 new cases of COVID-19 on Tuesday: 326 in Toronto, 136 in Peel and 64 in York, the province’s four COVID-19 hot spots There were three new deaths reported. Tuesday’s total was up 16 per cent from the 704 cases reported Monday Ontario now has 65,896 confirmed cases since the pandemic began The province conducted more than 24,000 tests on Monday, a significant drop from the more than 31,000 tests completed the day before “I’m not cancelling Halloween,” Premier Doug Ford says. “What we’re highly recommending is that you don’t go door-to-door in the hot spot areas.

Trick or treat will be very different this year due to group restrictions and the possibility of If parents do opt to bring their kids out to trick or treat this year they will be subject to the "rule of six". The rules around trick or treating differ between regions and areas, depending on local Covid alert Tier

As COVID-19 case numbers continue to creep up in much of the country, some parents are feeling spooked about letting their children trick-or-treat on Halloween.

  Trick or Treat? Experts divided on letting kids go out on Halloween due to COVID risk © Provided by The Canadian Press

Should they carry on with the door-to-door tradition, or find a different way to celebrate the eerie annual holiday?

While some infectious disease pediatricians say now is not the time for trick-or-treating, especially in COVID hot spots, others contend that the outdoor nature of the activity makes it fairly low-risk.

Dr. Anna Banerji, an associate professor at the University of Toronto's School of Public Health, says trick-or-treating should "probably be cancelled this year.''

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Millions of children across England will still be able to go trick or treating on Hallowe ' en , Downing Dispelling fears that the annual tradition would be shelved this year due to the pandemic, the Prime "If you're in a High Covid alert level then the rule of six applies in private gardens and outdoor spaces

HALLOWEEN trick or treating is allowed in Tiers 1 and 2 providing social distancing rules are adhered to, Business Minister Nadhim Zahawi has said. Guidance was also issued on Bonfire Night, with Scots being told not to hold large gatherings in their garden due to the cancellation of organised events.

"We've ... shut down gyms and restaurants (in parts of Ontario and Quebec) to try to control COVID,'' she said. "So I just don't think it's a good idea.''

Areas with few COVID cases will be safer for trick-or-treaters, Banerji says, but having contact with multiple people, regardless of how brief those interactions are, can carry higher risk in cities with larger concentrations of the virus.

Banerji says it will be tough to keep kids -- excited to see their dressed-up counterparts -- from congregating on driveways and sidewalks, which will make it harder for parents accompanying them to maintain a safe distance as well.

"In general it's not high-risk when you're just walking by someone on the street, but when you've got a whole bunch of kids and they're walking together, the risk might go up,'' Banerji said. "And the adults are there too. And they're being exposed to all these different kids.''

Loire-Atlantique. Halloween is for young and old

 Loire-Atlantique. Halloween is for young and old © Sandra Cunningham - stock.adobe. The Halloween party is an opportunity to give color to certain activities in the department. Halloween returns with fall. At the end of October, various activities around this Celtic festival are offered to children, adults or families. Catalog of ideas to scare oneself. Halloween is still October 31st. Many activities around this festival in tribute to monsters and the dead are offered in Loire-Atlantique.

Trick - or - treating is a traditional Halloween custom for children and adults in some countries. In the evening before All Saints' Day (1 November), children in costumes travel from house to house

Halloween in Los Angeles County will look different this year because of the coronavirus pandemic. Along with the annual activity, officials also banned "trunk- or - treating " events where kids go from For the latest on COVID -19, readers are encouraged to use online resources from CDC, WHO, and

Dr. Martha Fulford of McMaster Children's Hospital says the risk of COVID spreading through trick-or-treaters is "very small.''

The outdoor element helps mitigate danger, Fulford says, adding that keeping distance from groups on sidewalks should be easy enough by walking around them.

Still, she suggests safeguards to minimize potential transmission, like getting trick-or-treaters to stick to their own neighbourhoods and making sure kids clean their hands before indulging in their bounty.

Homeowners wary of contracting the virus from costumed kiddos on their porches can find creative ways to hand out candy as well.

Fulford suggests candy handlers sit outside, if weather permits, to avoid having too many fingers pushing doorbells. She doesn't suggest leaving a bulk, self-serve bowl outside, however, since having "multiple tiny hands" reaching in makes that a high-touch surface.

Centennial High students making sure kids get Halloween treats safely

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Kids will be able to go trick or treating — as long as they stay out of people’s homes. There had been fears the pandemic’s strict lockdown rules would kill Councils in South Yorkshire are telling kids to stay home, with local officers saying they will ramp up patrols on ­ Halloween and Bonfire Night.

COVID -19 Halloween safety tips from an expert . In Canada, at least, Halloween The pandemic has also affected the number of parents willing to take their kids trick or treating this year, with just This includes everything from trick or treating through to wearing masks.” These are some of the findings


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"Use tongs. Get some kind of dispensing thing or build a little slide where you pop the candy in a tube and it pops out the other end for the kids,'' Fulford said.

"We've learned COVID generally is not well-transmitted on surfaces. We don't think there's a problem when we go grocery shopping or anything like that. So sealed candies is not a problem.''

Canada's chief public health officer, Dr. Theresa Tam, said earlier this month that trick-or-treating could proceed as long as participants follow physical distancing and other safety protocols. She mentioned handing out treats on a hockey stick, or using pool noodles to separate kids from homeowners at their front doors.

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says there's no need to shelve trick-or-treating completely, recommending children stay two metres apart and wear cloth masks that can be incorporated into their costumes. The organization says a costume mask is not a substitute for a cloth mask, but layering of masks can cause breathing difficulties and isn't advised.

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Tags: Covid Halloween , Michigan Covid , Covid , Covid -19, Halloween , Candy, Trick - Or - Treating , Trick - Or - Treat , Gloves, Masks. Wide use of masks especially helps protect those at higher risk of severe illness from COVID -19 as well as workers who frequently come into close contact with other

Covid -19. More on halloween . Trick or treat . Here's how long pumpkins last once you've carved them for Halloween . “We say to anyone who’s going trick - or - treating to think about other people, particularly the elderly and vulnerable, as they may get worried or even frightened if strangers

Fulford says face coverings aren't necessary for children outdoors, but adults accompanying kids on their candy quest can wear them if they're struggling to maintain distance from other groups. If homeowners handing out candy feel safer wearing face coverings, they should do that as well, she adds.

Banerji, meanwhile, says all parties involved in trick-or-treating should be wearing face coverings. But an even better strategy, she said may be to not take part at all.

"For the first Halloween in my life, we're not going to do it,'' she said. "I just don't think it's safe.''

Fulford worries too many households will go that route, leaving kids disappointed.

She says kids have "borne the brunt of pandemic restrictions," from school closures back in March to the subsequenet cancellations of everything from team sports to in-person birthday parties.

"It's an easy default is to say 'no Halloween' but those who suffer the consequences are our kids,'' Fulford said. "To the best of our ability, I really do not think we should be canceling childhood.

"What are we teaching our children (by cancelling Halloween)? We're teaching them to be scared to have social interactions and we're not teaching resilience. So I worry.''

Dr. Nicole Racine, a child psychology expert with the University of Calgary, says kids are "creatures of habit'' who can find routine and meaning in annual traditions like Halloween.

So we have to be careful not to take too many of those shared experiences away from them, she said.

Racine suggests finding ways to replace experiences like trick-or-treating, such as holding a candy scavenger hunt within your own household, rather than canceling them outright.

``It's about how we can reframe things for kids so that there's still something to look forward to, still something to enjoy, and still something that can be quite meaningful to them,'' Racine said.

"It's going to be a balance of thinking about (limiting) risk to keep other members of our society safe while still being able to enjoy some of the social activities involved with being a kid.''

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Oct. 30, 2020.

Melissa Couto Zuber, The Canadian Press

Families prepare for pandemic-era Halloween with public health restrictions in place .
TORONTO — Canadians may be putting the final touches on their costumes and digging into their candy bowls like every other year, but the country is plunging into a Halloween unlike any before. Many families will forgo trick or treating Saturday on the advice of public health officials wanting to quell the spread of COVID-19 in hot spots, while others in provinces with fewer cases of the virus will head out for the annual festivities while donning masks and keeping their distance. The patchwork of recommendations has some Canadians dreaming up new ways to mark the holiday with candy scavenger hunts or using chutes, pipes and tongs to pass out treats.

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