Top News

Editorial: Halloween hazards

Trick or treat!
Trick or treat!

 

Pins inside apples. Razor blades lying in wait inside chocolate bars. Muscle relaxant pills in among the loose candy.

These are some of the hazardous items that were reportedly found lurking in children’s Halloween loot last year in Canada.

When your child goes trick-or-treating tonight, you can rest assured that he or she will get plenty of sweet treats from the neighbours, and a whole lot of smiles and compliments on their costume. It’s a fun, feel-good night for the whole community, when people love to greet pint-size witches and zombies, ballerinas and pirates at the door.

Sadly, though, there are always seems to be a rotten apple or two out there hoping to — at the very least — put a damper on the fun or, at worst, scare or harm an innocent child.

How else can you explain the regular Nov. 1st news reports of dangerous items found among children’s Halloween stashes?

This year, there’s an added twist, with police warning parents to be on the lookout for two more items with child appeal that aren’t intended for children at all.

In northern Quebec, provincial police recently seized a shipment of gummy bears laced with tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), the chemical compound found in cannabis that causes the high.

Police say while the product wasn’t intended for distribution to trick-or-treaters, it is a reminder to parents to check Halloween candy carefully for anything that looks out of the ordinary, is unlabelled or suspiciously labelled.

“The gummy bears look the same as regular candy (same shape and colours), some are even sealed in a plastic wrapper as a regular candy would be,” said police patrolling Cree communities in the Eeyou Istchee James Bay Territory and the regional public health board. “We do not know if this type of substance can be found in other Cree communities, so we want to alert all of the communities of the possible risk.”

Children who have ingested the drug could experience difficulty walking, slurred speech, hyperactive muscle movements or nausea, authorities said.

Meanwhile in Winnipeg, police carrying out a search warrant as part of a drug investigation seized blotters — small pieces of paper with doses of a drug dried into it — believe to contain fentanyl or possibly carfentanil. Each blotter has a kid friendly image — a witch riding a broom.

Const. Rob Carver said the blotters are very dangerous to touch and taste and anyone who finds one should call 911.

While, thankfully, the chances of either of these illicit products ending up in the hands of Atlantic Canadian trick-or-treaters seems remote, it’s two more reasons for parents to carefully inspect their kids’ candy haul, just to be on the safe side.

Here’s hoping the only hazard kids have to contend with this Halloween is a sugar rush.

Recent Stories