Trick or treating can go ahead in Kingston, says health unit
KINGSTON -- Ghosts and ghouls can head out trick-or-treating in the Kingston-area on Halloween, but the medical officer of health is urging everyone to stay extra safe this year due to COVID-19.
The Ministry of Health announced on Monday that all Ontarians should take extra precautions to stay safe this Halloween and discouraged traditional door-to-door trick or treating in regions that are currently in modified stage 2 in Ontario.
Public health officials outside of the hot zones, however, were given the green light to decide whether trick-or-treating could be safely done within its region.
On Friday, Dr. Kieran Moore announced that cities and towns in the Kingston, Frontenac, Lennox and Addington’s health unit region will be allowed to do door-to-door trick-or-treating on Oct. 31. Those include cities like Kingston and Napanee.
"Be kind and respectful this Halloween as not everyone may feel safe interacting with trick-or-treaters this year," said Dr. Moore. "I am confident that we can trick or treat safely in our community, for those who choose to take part this Halloween."
The health unit encouraged participants to take the following precautions
- Avoid gatherings with people outside of your household.
- Stay home if you are feeling ill and do not hand out candy to trick-or-treaters.
- Only go out with members of your household.
- Do not go into homes to collect treats - stay outside.
- Both children trick or treating and people handing out candy should wear a face covering. A costume mask is not a substitute for a face covering and should not be worn over a face covering as it may make it difficult to breathe.
- Do not congregate or linger at doorsteps and remember to line up two metres apart if waiting.
- Avoid touching high-touch surfaces and objects (e.g., doorbells, railings, etc.).
- Whether collecting or handing out treats, wash your hands often and thoroughly, or use hand sanitizer.
- Do not leave treats in a bucket or bowl for children to grab and consider using tongs or other similar tools to hand out treats.
- Drive safely - children may cross the street without checking for oncoming traffic.
On Friday, KFL&A announced it was changing it’s COVID-19 status from yellow to green, which indicates that active positive cases are rare, and there are no active outbreaks.
Ottawa Public Health and the Eastern Ontario Health Unit have recommended children do not go out trick-or-treating this year due to COVID-19.