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Scotland tells families not to trick-or-treat this Halloween because of Covid-19

Posted October 24, 2020 2:02 p.m. EDT

— The Scottish government says families should celebrate Halloween at home this year instead of going trick-or-treating to minimize the spread of Covid-19.

It urged people to avoid guising -- or going door-to-door for treats -- in a news release issued on Saturday.

Deputy First Minister John Swinney said that the guidance was needed to make sure people follow the restrictions on indoor and outdoor gatherings.

"I know guising is a big part of Halloween and children will be sad to miss out, but as door-to-door guising brings an additional and avoidable risk of spreading the virus, our clear advice for families is to avoid it," Swinney said in the release.

He said children can still get dressed up and share jokes with their families and pointed people to go to the government's Parent Club website for tips on celebrating during the pandemic.

The release said people would also have to follow the restrictions on group sizes and distancing on Bonfire Night, or Guy Fawkes Night, which is traditionally celebrated with fireworks on November 5.

First Minister Nicola Sturgeon set out a new five-tier system of Covid-19 restrictions on Friday that will go into effect on November 2, pending approval from the Scottish Parliament.

"Cases are still rising -- which is why we cannot be complacent -- but the rate of increase seems to be slowing, and that gives us grounds for optimism, albeit cautious optimism," Sturgeon said.

She said the slowing rate in infections is due to the ban on household gatherings that went into effect in September.

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