31st October 2020
Writing: Divit Kelmani
Photography: William Deakin-Radkov (Year 9)
Editing: Ben Corby (Year 11)
When werewolves, ghosts and vampires roam our neighbourhoods, concerned parents have been faced with a difficult dilemma: can it still go ahead in the pandemic? Politicians are facing a similar situation, with Nicola Sturgeon declaring that she wouldn’t rule out the possibility of banning trick or treating closer to the event and the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health making changes to its door knocking safety regulations after backlash from worried parents. The Brits alone spent £400 million on this event last year, so what are the solutions for hosting it in 2020? Do the consequences of celebrating Halloween outweigh the possible solutions? The scariest night of the year has become much more terrifying.
The US has highly recommended to not take part in door to door trick or treating as there are many difficulties such as maintaining social distancing and the risks of sharing food.The UK government has not issued any official guidance on how to (or not) celebrate Halloween but are likely to provide some closer to the time. There is also a much higher risk of the elderly catching the virus in the process of giving away sweets and chocolates. With many children of different ages roaming from household to household at one time, it also ruins the year bubble system that Dr Challoner’s Grammar School and other secondary schools have put in place to keep students safe as there will be mixing between different years. However, it isn’t completely impossible to celebrate the traditions of October 31st safely.
Due to the nature of certain costumes, it would not be too hard for parents to incorporate masks into them and keep everyone safe when distributing and/or receiving sweets. The same can be said about gloves, so that your fingers do not spread the virus to your mouth or other people while rummaging for goodies. Social distancing can also be maintained between people if a neighbourhood can schedule certain times for a certain group of people, meaning cross contamination between years is much less likely to occur. Non wrapped sweets and chocolates should be avoided at all costs and the amalgamation of treats kids bring home can be either left for 2 days so that they can be consumed safely. Although coronavirus has made it almost impossible for events and festivities to be held, we can still have fun while keeping yourself, your family and your friends safe.