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Do everyone a favour and stay in this St. Patrick’s Day
Remember that story I wrote last week about different ways to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day this year? Yeah… scrap that!
In the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic, measures were taken last week by the Ontario government — such as the closing of all publicly funded schools — in an attempt to slow the spread of the virus. Therefore, it’s safe to say that staying in this St. Patrick’s Day is the smartest way to celebrate it this year.
Canada’s public health agency’s guide for provincial and local health authorities states that “it is crucial that individuals follow quarantine and self-isolation recommendations properly to prevent transmission of COVID-19 to others in the home setting or in the community.” This includes protective self-separation, voluntary self isolation and the avoidance of crowded places.
Although Ryerson cancelled in-person classes and activities on March 13, students are still living in residence for the time being.
St. Patrick’s Day is tomorrow and while the temptation to party with your friends may be ever-present and intriguing — especially in a time where so much is uncertain — it’s important to remember that partying with a group of people is not only unsafe, but ignorant.
This past weekend, students from Queen’s University still gathered for street parties on March 14 for St. Patrick’s Day, despite health officials urging people to not attend large gatherings.
This wasn’t just specific to Queen’s, though. Many students across the country and in Ontario still went partying this past weekend. And they didn’t hide it either. I saw it plastered on my social media; some even made jokes about how coronavirus can’t stop them.
Of course, this upset a few people, including myself. Over the weekend, people took to Twitter to express their anger at seeing people still living carelessly, all while knowing they are being advised to stay in.
However, just because you are young and can probably beat off COVID-19, doesn’t mean you shouldn’t be taking precautions.
Trust me when I say this: unnecessarily catching COVID-19 just because you couldn’t miss that St. Patrick’s Day party won’t be a good excuse when you potentially and unknowingly pass it onto others, including those who are vulnerable and could potentially die.
If we want to get through this pandemic as a community, we need to start thinking about other people besides ourselves. Just because you aren’t afraid of getting coronavirus doesn’t mean no one is.
So I stress, please refrain from partying this year for St. Patrick’s Day. There’s always next year, and the year after that. In the end, it’s not worth putting others’ lives at risk.