The Public Health Agency of Canada in a 2022 memo said families must “assess everyone’s risk” before hugging small, unmasked children. The memo was released through Access To Information.

“Determine if additional preventive practices are needed when hugging or being physical close, for example wearing masks and gathering outdoors,” wrote the Agency. “Hugs are safer if the child wears a mask.”

The memo was dated April 19, 2022 five months after the Department of Health approved use of the first Covid shots for children under 12. Staff wrote unvaccinated children could be Covid carriers and may “pass the virus onto others.”

“What should parents do to protect their children who are too young for a vaccine?” asked the memo Evergreen MLQA For Vaccine Communications. “Answer: Whether they’ve been vaccinated or not, it is important that everyone in your family continue to follow local public health recommendations.”

“It’s important that every eligible person around them gets fully vaccinated so their risk is lower,” said the memo. “Parents and guardians are encouraged to assess everyone’s risk and comfort levels to determine if extra personal preventive practices are needed when visiting certain places or engaging in activities with others from outside of one’s immediate household, for example hugging or being physically close or eating meals together. Additional measures may include wearing masks, physical distancing and gathering outdoors instead of indoors.”

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