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NWT public health officer issues Thanksgiving guidelines

Dr. Kami Kandola, the chief public health officer for the NWT, says it is inevitable that the territory will get more cases of Covid-19. NNSL file photo

A release from the Office of the Chief Public Health Officer (OCPHO) of the GNWT on Oct. 6 reminded people of the gathering limits as well as tips to remain safe during Thanksgiving and other holidays and special events while enjoying the occasion with close friends and family.

People feeling unwell even with minor symptoms are to cancel their get-together and to look at ways to connect with loved ones while social distancing such as contacting loved ones online. Those who are currently required to self-isolate cannot host others for their gathering and are to connect virtually instead.

There is a maximum of 10 people allowed in each home with a limit of 25 people for public indoor spaces. With regards to larger outdoor gatherings you are allowed up to 50 people as long as physical distancing and hand-washing is followed.

Tips from the CPHO Dr. Kami Kandola for celebrating special occasions include setting up your table for physical distancing, using the best space available for good ventilation, ensuring guests have access to hand sanitizer, soap and alcohol wipes for common touching points as well as to use prior to eating.

People are also recommended to limit their interactions up to two weeks prior to the the upcoming gathering to minimize any risks ahead of the holiday. For Thanksgiving specifically having a designated carver and cutter for the dinner is recommended.

Other recommended tips for mindful hosts include, asking guest to bring a 'doggie bag' just in case they feel unwell during the day so they do not miss out on Thanksgiving dinner, and to avoid sharing cutlery and dishes with each other.

If you are coming to visit a loved one in a continuing care home or in a hospital setting, masks are required in all NWT Health and Social Services Authority buildings.