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'Halloween is not canceled' | Mayor Turner encourages residents to find alternatives to trick-or-treating

He added that the positivity rate is at 6.5% which is an increase from 5.6% last week.

HOUSTON — Mayor Sylvester Turner says the city is not canceling Halloween but is encouraging residents to find alternatives to trick-or-treating.

The mayor said there are 168 new cases of COVID-19 on Monday with no news deaths to report.

He added that the positivity rate is at 6.5% which is an increase from 5.6% last week.

With the holiday season approaching, the mayor warns the city needs to be alert since cases across the nation are on the rise.

"So today we simply want to sound the alarm that what we did during the summer to bring this virus back under some degree of control are the same things we need to do as we move forward into the rest of this year,” the mayor said.

With Halloween coming up this weekend, the mayor says Houston is not cancelling Halloween but they are suggesting people find safer alternatives this year.

He is not recommending traditional trick-or-treating. Instead, people should leave pre-packaged candy bags on a table outside for kids to limit contact.

COVID-19 cases continue to increase across the country as we head into the winter months.

As of Monday morning, more than 862,000 Texans tested have positive for the virus, and it's blamed for 17,000 deaths in the state.

COVID-19 surge in El Paso

In El Paso, the case count is growing so quickly crews are setting up overflow tents to treat as many people as they can.

On Sunday, the city reported more than 1,500 cases.

Gov. Greg Abbott announced the state will open a new COVID-19 facility at the city's convention and performing arts center. He also asked to be able to move COVID-negative patients to the hospital on Fort Bliss.

A new curfew is also in effect in El Paso as the ICUs fill up there.

CBS News National Correspondent David Begnaud is reporting that the city now accounts for more than 20 percent of all new coronavirus cases in Texas.