News release

Guidance for Thanksgiving Gatherings

Thanksgiving celebrations may look different in 2020 and government is reminding Nova Scotians of the current public health measures as the holiday approaches.

People can continue to gather in close social groups of up to 10 without physical distancing. Nova Scotians are strongly encouraged to celebrate Thanksgiving with family and friends from their consistent group of 10.

“Nova Scotians have made changes to their daily lives to help reduce the spread of COVID-19, and it’s no different for Thanksgiving,” said Dr. Robert Strang, Nova Scotia’s chief medical officer of health. “When deciding who to invite, consider the impacts on family and friends who may be more vulnerable and adjust your Thanksgiving celebrations to be as safe as possible.”

It remains important for Nova Scotians to strictly adhere to the public health order and directives - practise good hand washing and other hygiene steps, maintain six feet of physical distance when and where required.

Here are a few other tips:

  • regularly clean while preparing food and disinfect other high touch surface areas in the household such as washrooms, doorknobs, countertops, tables, chairs, etc.
  • do not host if you or someone in your household are feeling unwell or are self-isolating for any reason
  • do not host guests who are feeling unwell or are self-isolating for any reason; you can send a meal home for them
  • think about how to make food service more COVID-safe – for example, designate one person to prepare plates instead of passing around bowls and platters with common utensils

Rotational workers who are self-isolating are reminded that although government has eased some of the self-isolation requirements, they are not permitted to have people from outside their household to visit them on their property or in their home or go to another person’s home during their self-isolation period.

Anyone who leaves the Atlantic Bubble for Thanksgiving celebrations must self-isolate for 14 days upon returning to Atlantic Canada.

Guidance for upcoming holidays will be released closer to the date of each holiday and will reflect the epidemiology of the province at that time.

Additional Resources:

Nova Scotians can find accurate, up-to-date information, handwashing posters and fact sheets at https://novascotia.ca/coronavirus .

For guidance on community hosted events, visit: https://novascotia.ca/coronavirus/docs/CCH-COVID-19-Stakeholder-Guidance-Document.pdf

For guidance on community hosted events where food will be served, visit the Restaurant Association of Nova Scotia’s approved plan: https://novascotia.ca/coronavirus/sector-specific-guidance/#plans

The Mental Health Provincial Crisis Line is available 24/7 to anyone experiencing a mental health or addictions crisis, or someone concerned about them, by calling 1-888-429-8167 (toll-free)

Kids Help Phone is available 24/7 by calling 1-800-668-6868 (toll-free)

For help or information about domestic violence 24/7, call 1-855-225-0220 (toll-free)

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