Green light for trick-or-treaters, red for Halloween parties: MLHU
LONDON, ONT. -- The medical officer of health for Middlesex-London is giving his OK for trick-or-treating in the local region this year, but he cautioned that the activity not without risk.
In a virtual news conference Monday, Dr. Chris Mackie said while there is “some risk” associated with it, there are ways to make it safer.
“It's definitely something that will have some degree of risk associated with it. But there are ways of making trick-or-treating safer. You know the most interesting one that I've heard recently is putting disposable plastic cups with a few candies in it spread out across, you know your front porch or outside your door, so that kids don't have to reach into the same bowl, contaminate the bowl and potentially pick up not just candy, but COVID-19 as well.”
It’s good news for parent Andrew Roper. He said he plans to take his nine- and six-year-old daughters around his neighbourhood Saturday evening, and he’s not about to get spooked by the pandemic.
“We’re going trick-or-treating this year. I think the kids need to be out there, the kids need to enjoy the things that kids should do. There are safety measures, sure, but I think the kids need to be out there. I think they need to enjoy being a kid and seeing all their friends and having a good time.”
Provincial health officials continue to advise against trick-or-treating in Ontario hotspots, and are recommending families find ways to celebrate Halloween at home.
It comes as the seven-day average of case counts in Ontario hit an all time high of 878. Health officials are making a direct connection between the recent high daily case counts and Thanksgiving get-togethers a couple of weeks ago.
So what about grownup parties? After all, Halloween falls on a Saturday this year and many grown goblins like to get into the spirit as well. But is tempting fate for a little ghoulish fun worth the risk?
Based on Mackie’s response, the answer would be a hard no.
“You know, partying during Halloween is the biggest risk, it would definitely be in the red zone, do not do it, sort of area. Indoor parties are a great way to spread COVID-19 we've seen that over and over here in London and Middlesex, but also around the world with COVID-19. Parties indoors are efficient at spreading COVID-19.”