New Brunswick city counselors will soon implement a new law that will prohibit teenagers over 16 years old to participate in trick-or-treat activities, Good To Know reported. The Canadian town will only allow younger kids to do this traditional activity held every Halloween season.

According to the city counselors, the new law will take effect beginning October 3rd. It will also implement a curfew that requires local citizens to be inside their homes by 8 p.m., as Halloween activities in many parts of the world are usually carried out late at night.

Teenagers over the age of 16 who are caught asking for candy treats from homes will be fined $200.

During the curfew, anyone caught outdoors will also be fined the same amount, Good To Know added.

Purpose of the rule

According to New Brunswick spokesperson Luc Foulem, this new law will be implemented to prevent these teenagers from causing trouble outdoors during the Halloween season. It aims to promote public safety in the vicinity.

This law is based on a previous regulation passed in 2005 that prohibited trick-or-treat activities for those ages 14 and above, and also enforced a curfew at 7 p.m. It has been revised through this new rule that is expected to pass third reading in October and become a law.

Foulem also added that no person has been fined since the 2005 version was passed.

Criticisms

Kim Chamberlain, the deputy mayor of Bathurst City, said this new law has gone overboard when it comes to regulating activities during the holidays. This deputy mayor is one of those who opposed this rule.

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Bathurst is on the county seat of New Brunswick and Gloucester County.

She said that homeowners can just simply turn off their porch lighting if they do not want to accommodate these children asking for treats later in the night. She added that many children and teenagers usually go out beyond 8 p.m. for the activity because parents take time to prepare them with all the costumes and props. Parents usually work until 6 p.m. and go home late, she added.

Chamberlain shared that she is also worried that children might be questioned by authorities simply because of trick-or-treating. She said, “What are we going to do, go up to him and ask him, ‘How old are you?’ and ‘Show me your ID?’ That doesn’t make sense.”

Social media also reacted to this rule, saying that instead of promoting safety, it can even bring risks to younger children since these older teenagers are usually ones accompanying them during these activities. They also act as their chaperones and guardians, since seeing parents along with them might be unusual.