Wilson: Hallowe’en 2020 must be restricted

  • Forced to be the Grinch: Kim Wilson, the Minister of Health, warns against traditional Hallowe’en activities during yesterday’s Covid-19 update (Photograph by Blaire Simmons)

    Forced to be the Grinch: Kim Wilson, the Minister of Health, warns against traditional Hallowe’en activities during yesterday’s Covid-19 update (Photograph by Blaire Simmons)

  • David Burt, the Premier, gives a Covid-19 update (Photograph by Blaire Simmons)

    David Burt, the Premier, gives a Covid-19 update (Photograph by Blaire Simmons)

Traditional Hallowe’en festivities should be axed because of the real-life horror show of Covid-19, the health minister said last night.

Kim Wilson told the public that high-risk activities “that you should definitely not do this year” included traditional, door-to-door trick-or-treating and crowded indoor costume parties.

She added that indoor haunted houses where people may be crowded together and shouting or screaming and any activity with large congregations of people outside single households should also be avoided.

Ms Wilson said: “It certainly brings me no joy to discourage our usual Hallowe’en activities this year.

“I know Hallowe’en is a time which many of our children look forward to and a big part of that is traditional trick or treating. But I ask you to imagine the contact tracing hurdles that would arise if just one industrious trick-or-treater was Covid-19 positive. It’s not worth the risk.”

Ms Wilson added the recommendations were based on advice from the US-based Centres for Disease Control and Prevention.

She said: “This pandemic has certainly not been easy for any of us — perhaps least of all our children. Birthday parties have been put on hold, celebrations cancelled, trips postponed, everyone is suddenly now wearing a mask … it can be a confusing time for our children.

“But we must continue to follow the guidance. I know it is tempting and I feel like the biggest buzz kill standing up here each week — but we must.”

Ms Wilson told the public: “Our numbers are low because we have been so good at following government advice to this point. We need to keep going. As I have said before, this is not for ever.

“Please, Bermuda, just hang in there for a while longer. As winter approaches and countries are seeing their second wave begin, we cannot afford to let our guard down now.”

Ms Wilson said low-risk Hallowe’en activities that people could do included carving or decorating pumpkins with members of the same household, decorating homes and holding a virtual costume contests.

Ms Wilson also suggested having a Hallowe’en movie night with family members and a trick or treat hunt with household members in or around their own homes.

She added that moderate-risk activities that should be done — only if they can be done safely — included one-way trick or treating with individually wrapped “grab and go” goodie bags left at the end of the driveway and small outdoor costume parades where people were distanced more than six feet apart.

Ms Wilson said costume parties held outdoors with proper surgical-style masks and social distancing, visits to a pumpkin patch where the use of hand sanitiser, mask-wearing and social-distancing was enforced or outdoor Hallowe’en movie nights with local family and friends spaced at least six feet apart could also be held.

Ms Wilson added that 347 tests for the coronavirus had come in clear yesterday.

She said there were only two active cases of Covid-19 on the island and neither of the victims were in hospital.

But she added they were being monitored by public health officials.

To view the full statements from the Premier and the Minister of Health, click on the PDF links under “Related Media”

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Published Oct 7, 2020 at 8:00 am (Updated Oct 7, 2020 at 3:42 pm)

Wilson: Hallowe’en 2020 must be restricted

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