Northern Ireland news

Avoid trick or treating this Halloween, PHA urges

The PHA has advised people against trick or treating due to Covid-19

PEOPLE are being urged to abandon `unsafe' Halloween traditions of bobbing for apples or going outside to trick or treat.

The Public Health Agency (PHA) is urging people to come up with new ways this year to have fun which stick to Covid-19 guidance.

It has shared several ideas and games that will work within restrictions.

They include arranging a virtual party online with families or relatives with prizes for the best costume or organising a treat hunt around gardens.

Dr Gerry Waldron, Head of Health Protection at the PHA, said the past six months had been tough for everyone.

"It is important that we take the opportunity to have fun and enjoy ourselves when we can, and Halloween is the perfect opportunity to do this safely," he said.

"With just a bit of creativity, we can think of new ways to have fun at Halloween which also keep us safe from Covid-19.

"We do not advise continuing the tradition of bobbing for apples this year or going outside to trick or treat within the community, as these are not safe practices this year, as they increase the risk of infection. Sharing of food and sweets can also spread the Covid-19 virus. Face-to-face interactions with older and vulnerable neighbours could also put them at risk."

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