Public health dos and don’ts for Halloween and trick-or-treating
With Halloween just weeks away, health officials in Waterloo Region are offering COVID-19 guidance for how to celebrate safely.
Greyson Siles is turning two years old on Halloween and has his mother Christina looking for a birthday costume.
"I'm trying to get him to be Josh from Blues Clues and I'll be Magenta and my hsuband will be Blue," she said.
This will mark Greyson's first time trick-or-treating, since public health advised against it last year.
"I'm very excited for that," said Christina.
Kristen Melcher, the general manager at Party City in Kitchener, says the Halloween hype is real in 2021.
"Sales are going very well and people are very excited about the costumes we're offering this year," she said.
Speaking at a Region of Waterloo council meeting on Tuesday, medical officer of health Dr. Hsiu-Li Wang said anyone heading out to trick-or-treat on Halloween should follow public health protocols.
- Stay home if sick
- Follow an outdoor route
- Wait for others to leave a home before approaching
- Wear a face covering
Dr. Wang said a costume mask is not a suitable replacement for a face covering. She also recommends trick-or-treaters avoid wearing both a costume mask and a face covering.
IF GIVING OUT CANDY:
- Wash hands before giving out candy
- Only hand out purchased and packaged treats
- Wear a face mask
- Don't ask trick-or-treaters to shout or sing
Parent Gertrude Bennett says she is excited to actually hand out candy this year.
"I'll pass out treats and his Dad will take him trick-or-treating, and last year I just left the treats on the steps for the kids," she said. "I love seeing the little ones coming to the door in their costumes and giving them lots of candy."
For those planning to host a Halloween party, Dr. Wang said gathering limits must be followed. Indoor gatherings are currently capped at 25 people and outdoor gatherings are restricted to 100 people.