Trick-or-Treating During a Pandemic: Is it safe?

Many parents struggling with the decision to let their children trick-or-treat

Trick-or-Treating During a Pandemic: Is it safe?

Sophia Maccario, Student Writer

Halloween 2020 will no doubt look different this year. Many parents are concerned about the safety of their children while trick-or-treating during a pandemic and struggling with the decision to let their child trick or treat this year. 

The Center for Disease Control and Prevention recommends children do not trick-or-treat this year. However, they know it is a difficult decision to make so if you decide to let your child go, they recommend you incorporate a mask into the costume. 

Traditional trick-or-treating is listed as a high-risk category under the CDC recommendations. Some low-risk alternatives to trick-or-treating the CDC recommends include carving pumpkins, having a virtual Halloween costume contest, doing a scavenger hunt, or having a movie night with family. 

If your family makes the decision to trick-or-treat, the CDC has many guidelines they suggest you follow. The first is to incorporate a cloth mask into your costume. A costume mask can not be a substitution for a cloth mask. They also suggest to bring hand sanitizer and apply some after every house you go to. Children should also wash their hands for twenty seconds after arriving back home and before eating any candy. 

How Will Americans Celebrate Halloween in 2020? – GantNews.comIn a recent survey, local parents responded if they were letting their children trick-or-treat and if they would be taking precautions. 53.8% of parents around the metro area said they were letting their children trick-or-treat. 23.1% said they were undecided and the other 23.1% said they would not be letting their children trick-or-treat this year. 

For the 53.8% of parents who responded saying they would let their children trick-or-treat, 80% said they would be taking precautions. These precautions included masks, gloves, limiting the number of houses children go to, and only trick-or-treating with immediate family. 

One local neighborhood made the decision to decorate the trunks of their cars and have children come up to the car to get their candy rather than going inside their houses. 

A concerned mother of an elementary-aged child responded, “I feel like I have to let my daughter trick-or-treat. This is her favorite holiday and she looks forward to this all year long. However, I am concerned about COVID-19 and will be taking precautions.” Many parents felt this way and felt bad for saying no to trick-or-treating because it is such a fun tradition that kids look forward to every year. 

For the 23.1% of parents who responded saying they would not be letting their children trick-or-treat, many parents had other ideas to still celebrate this fun holiday. One family said they will be having an at-home party with just their immediate family. They will be having a scavenger hunt and will be watching a movie. 

One mother expressed her concerns about trick-or-treating, “I am at high-risk for COVID-19, I simply can’t afford for my child to trick-or-treat and risk getting myself sick. Despite not being able to trick-or-treat, we are still finding fun ways to celebrate the season.” 

It is ultimately up to parents if they feel it is safe for their child to trick-or-treat this holiday season. If you feel it is safe for you and your family, the state of Minnesota will not stop you. Just make sure to take precautions to be safe.