Coronavirus: Province releases guidelines for Manitobans taking part in fall events

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The province has released its fall holiday guidelines hoping to clear up some of the confusion involving Halloween. Marek Tkach reports – Oct 2, 2020

The Province of Manitoba has issued some new guidelines on how to deal with upcoming holidays and celebrations during the COVID-19 pandemic.

According to a new, extensive document released by the province Friday, Manitobans should minimize gatherings and celebrations when possible — and that applies to the upcoming Thanksgiving and Halloween holidays as well.

For starters, anyone experiencing any symptoms is being discouraged from attending any events, as are people who may be more susceptible to infection.

Read more: Should you skip Thanksgiving due to the pandemic? Manitoba’s top doctor says yes

The usual guidelines of wearing a mask and social distancing continue to apply as well, and if possible, Manitobans are being urged to move their gatherings online for contactless communication.

For food-based gatherings — like Thanksgiving, which the province has already advised against celebrating on a large scale this year — Manitoba Health has a few tips to limit transmission of the coronavirus:

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  • Frequently clean and disinfect commonly touched surfaces
  • Wash hands for at least 15 seconds, or use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer, before and after eating, as well as before and after handling food or food packaging
  • Place handwashing areas/alcohol-based hand sanitizer near the food service area to encourage use
  • Designate one person to serve guests’ food to reduce the sharing of utensils… or order individual portions from a restaurant or caterer.
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Halloween so far is still on, but the province is encouraging anyone who feels unwell not to take part.

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Anyone who starts to feel sick while out trick-or-treating is encouraged to head home right away, and Halloween participants should use the province’s online screening tool before heading out.

Frequent handwashing applies to trick-or-treaters as well, and families should check their area’s level on the local Pandemic Response System before making the decision to head out on Halloween or not.

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A full list of detailed tips and guidelines is available here.

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