Nevada health officials encourage alternatives for trick-or-treating

Published: Oct. 14, 2020 at 1:14 PM PDT
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CARSON CITY, Nev. (KOLO) - State health officials on Wednesday urged Nevadans to find alternatives for trick-or-treating this Halloween to help mitigate the spread of COVID-19.

The State Health Response released guidelines for celebrating both Halloween and Día de los Muertos.

In a press release, health officials said in part:

“Many traditional activities, such as door-to-door trick-or-treating, may appear low risk because they take place outdoors or the interactions may be short. However, when a lot of people participate in lower-risk activities at the same time, it raises the potential for disease spread across the state.”

The recommendations come as Governor Steve Sisolak announces annual Halloween festivities at the Governor’s Mansion have been canceled.

In a statement, the governor said in part:

"We made the decision that protecting the health and safety of the limited staff at the mansion and our fellow Nevadans must be our top priority. We encourage all Nevadans to safely celebrate this year and we look forward to welcoming everyone back next year for the biggest and best Halloween yet.”

The governor encouraged Nevadans to follow the recommendations from state health officials.

The recommendations and guidance include outdoor activities as opposed to indoor, smaller group gatherings, and participating in virtual activities instead.

The Nevada Department of Health and Human Services is encouraging alternatives to traditional, door-to-door trick-or-treating and listed the following risks:

• Door-to-door trick-or-treating results in many closer interactions over a short period of time. Taken together, these may raise the risk of COVID-19 spread.

• Door-to-door trick-or-treating involves mixing lots of different households at close range. When you open your door to hand out candy, you are unlikely to be able to keep at least 6 feet of distance.

• It can be hard not to mingle with friends and neighbors. Even if you intend not to interact, by being out and about, it may be hard to avoid.

Health officials suggest finding alternate ways of handing out candy and listed the following examples:

Line up individually wrapped treats at the end of the driveway or yard’s edge.

Use a plastic slide, cardboard tubes, or plastic pipes to deliver candy from a distance.

Take kids on an outdoor, distanced treasure hunt to look for candy or Halloween-themed items.

Washoe County officials have not yet released guidelines on Halloween celebrations, however, Washoe County Health Officer Kevin Dick said the county is in much agreement with the CDC’s guidelines released last week.

Read the guidelines and recommendations below:

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