*The following article originally appeared in The Hill on August 31, 2020.
Lawmakers Press CDC For Guidance On Celebrating Halloween During Pandemic
A bipartisan group of 30 members of Congress urged Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Director Robert Redfield to provide safety guidance on community activities around Halloween during the coronavirus pandemic.
“We are writing to ask you to update your Halloween safety guidance to include considerations related to COVID-19 so that Americans across the country know how to celebrate the Halloween season safely this year,” the members, including Reps. Sheila Jackson Lee (D-Texas), Rodney Davis (R-Ill.), Ann McLane Kuster (D-N.H.) and Jackie Walorski (R-Ind.), wrote to Redfield last week.
They asked for the CDC to issue public comment on the advisability of community activities such as video costume parties, leaving packages of candy for friends and neighbors and setting up drive-through trick-or-treat venues where children can dress up and wear masks.
“With the appropriate guidance from the CDC, Americans can celebrate Halloween throughout the month of October in ways that prioritize community safety and adhere to rigorous socially distancing requirements,” the members wrote.
The National Confectioners Association, which represents the candy industry, is supportive of the letter and noted that people are looking for creative and safe ways to celebrate the holiday.
“Masks aren’t just for Halloween anymore. Staying safe should be a priority for everyone this Halloween season — and guidance from the CDC is an important factor in making sure that people can have a creative, fun, and safe Halloween,” Christopher Gindlesperger, NCA senior vice president of public affairs and communications, told The Hill.