The B.C. Centre for Disease Control has released tips for a COVID-safe Halloween this year. (pxhere.com)

The B.C. Centre for Disease Control has released tips for a COVID-safe Halloween this year. (pxhere.com)

B.C. CDC releases Thanksgiving, Halloween tips for COVID-safe fall celebrations

People who are quarantined or self-isolating are being told to leave their houses dark

The B.C. Centre for Disease Control has released a guide for families and kids hoping to go trick-or-treating this Halloween, as well as for any other upcoming gatherings including Thanksgiving.

The CDC said that children can trick-or-treat this year as long as they take the appropriate precautions, including looking for candy only in their neighbourhood, instead of travelling across their communities. Trick-or-treating in malls or other indoor spaces is not recommended, and groups are asked to stay small. The CDC does not recommend cleaning each candy bar before eating but advises instead that kids use hand sanitizer or wash their hands before and after having a treat. Wearing a non-medical mask that covers the mouth and nose is recommended, although health officials warned against wearing a second, costume mask on top.

Homes hoping to hand out candy are being asked to avoid handing treats directly to kids. Instead, the CDC recommends using tongs, placing candy on a tray and not using a shared bowl. People handing out treats are asked to wear a non-medical mask and stand outside for better ventilation and to avoid kids touching the doorbell. If decorating, don’t use smoke machines or anything that could cause coughing.

People who are quarantined or self-isolating are being told to leave their houses dark, while trick-or-treaters are asked to avoid homes that aren’t lit up with Halloween decorations.

Both kids and adults are asked to avoid Halloween parties this year, sticking to their pandemic bubbles of six or less for any gatherings.

The CDC also released guidelines for for “safer celebrations” as a whole. The next holiday is Thanksgiving on Oct. 12.

“Keep gatherings small, local and within your social group this year,” the agency urged. Party hosts are encouraged to only meet up indoors with their pandemic bubble of six people or fewer, and to check to make sure that no attendees are experiencing symptoms or have been exposed to COVID-19.

For indoor gatherings, the CDC said that more ventilation, bigger rooms and less time spent together are key to reducing the risk of transmission. As far as food and drinks go, the CDC recommended limiting alcohol or any substances that could make it more likely for people to lower their inhibitions and not follow best practices. The agency recommended not having buffet style meals and providing hand washing and sanitizing opportunities for people and discouraging them from sharing drinks or plates.

The CDC said there is no evidence that COVID-19 can spread when people eat food prepared by others. However, frequent hand-washing and not cooking or attending gatherings when experiencing symptoms is key to reducing the spread of the virus.

READ MORE: Canada’s top doctor gives tips for COVID-safe Thanksgiving amid high daily cases


@katslepian

katya.slepian@bpdigital.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Want to support local journalism during the pandemic? Make a donation here.

CoronavirusHalloween

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

A memorial to Hudson Brooks outside the South Surrey RCMP detachment. (File photo)
Officer who fatally shot Hudson Brooks recounts ‘absolutely terrifying’ incident

Const. Elizabeth Cucheran testified at coroner’s inquest Tuesday morning

Photo posted to facebook.com/HoratioAlgerCA.
Eight Surrey students among 170 Horatio Alger scholarship winners in Canada

‘Need-based scholarships’ given to high school students

File photo
Surrey council members give themselves a raise in secret meeting

A redacted report was subsequently posted to the city’s website

Students with Seaquam Secondary’s Delta Youth Advisory Council are collecting non-perishable food donations Feb. 1 to March 5 to help feed local families in need over spring break. (Delta School District/submitted photo)
Seaquam Secondary food drive to help feed 15 North Delta families

Donations can be dropped week days between 8 a.m. and 3 p.m. until Monday, March 8

Jennifer Brooks with a stone tablet that adorns the memorial to her son Hudson, outside the South Surrey RCMP detachment parkade where he was fatally shot by police in July 2015. (File photo)
Coroner’s inquest underway to examine Hudson Brooks’ 2015 police-shooting death

Witness recalls ‘feeling scared’ for South Surrey man in moments before RCMP fired fatal shots

Older rental apartments are prime candidates for renovations, and could result in lost affordable housing stock. (Zoë Ducklow photo)
B.C.’s renoviction overhaul a good start, but won’t preserve affordable stock, lawyer says

And still no protection for people who can’t pay rent due to COVID-19

(Photo by Marissa Baecker/Shoot the Breeze)
B.C. WHL teams to hit the ice with Kelowna, Kamloops hub cities

Kelowna, Kamloops centres chosen to host B.C. WHL teams for 24-game regular season

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

The machines are akin to ATMs and allow drug users at risk of overdose to get hydromorphone pills dispensed to them after their palm has been scanned to identify its unique vein pattern. (CANADIAN PRESS)
Feds dole out $3.5M for ‘vending machines’ to dispense safer opioids in B.C.

The machines are located in four cities across Canada, including Vancouver and Victoria

Kelowna’s lakefront visitor centre is one of 130 around the province. Tourism businesses have been hardest hit by COVID-19 restrictions on travel. (Destination B.C.)
Tourism, small business getting COVID-19 help, B.C. minister says

$300M grant program has delivered $50 million so far

The incident happened in downtown Castlegar. Photo: Betsy Kline
Castlegar teen recounts stabbing after stranger breaks into grandmother’s house

The unnamed teen survived a terrifying attack Feb. 21

(Black Press file photo)
Agassiz boy, 11, dies from ‘extensive injuries’: Homicide team

Agassiz RCMP were called out Friday to assist with a child in medical distress

Most Read