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Traditional Halloween not recommended in hot spots regions says Ontario's top doctor

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According to guidance released Monday morning, Chief Medical Officer of Health Dr. David Williams says the risk of transmission in those areas is too great.

The Eastern Ontario Health Unit is "strongly recommending" that you "avoid traditional ways of celebrating Halloween", such as going door-to-door or handing out candy, given the significant increase in COVID-19 cases.

The province is reporting 704 new cases of COVID-19 today, with 244 new cases in Toronto, 168 in Peel, 103 in York Region, and 51 in Ottawa.

While it's still unclear how many, if any, people will be participating in trick-or-treating this year, the stores' shelves are still stocked with Halloween candy.

To date APH has reported 40 positive cases of COVID-19 across Sault Ste.

Public health officials encourage kids in the trick-or-treat ban zone to have virtual parties, organize candy hunts with people in their own household, carve pumpkins, or have a movie or scary stories night.

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If you're planning to head out, avoid large groups and indoor gatherings, and use a face covering (your costume's mask doesn't count).

Whether collecting or handing out treats, wash your hands often and thoroughly or use hand sanitizer.

APH also recommends to stay home if ill or suffering mid flu-like symptoms, only trick-or-treat with those in your immediate household and do not congregate or linger at doorsteps and in line ups.

Williams is also recommending that you check with your local municipality or public health unit for any additional advice or restrictions that may be in place.

Outside of Toronto, Peel, Ottawa and York, Williams said trick-or-treating should only go outside with members of their own household and only collect candy given to them outdoors.

"It is also critical that families not travel outside of their neighbourhood to celebrate Halloween", Williams said.

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