Covid NJ: Indoor Mask Mandates Return as COVID Mutations Spike

Source: New Jersey Patch

State officials aren’t currently requiring face masks indoors — only “recommending” that people wear them. But in recent weeks, several municipalities in North Jersey have gone a step beyond, reviving local indoor mask mandates as cases of COVID-19 rise.

mandate will be enforced “until further notice.” It requires all people over 3 years old to wear a mask while in any indoor public facility, and to wear one outdoors when maintaining a proper social distance from others isn’t possible. The mandate includes all residents, visitors, employees and vendors operating within any of the city’s establishments.

HOBOKEN re-instituted a mask mandate for any business or public building starting Wednesday, “except when actively eating or drinking.” The mandate applies to everyone over age 2. There are other exceptions, such as for those who can distance from everyone for at least 6 feet for an extended period. Read More: Indoor Mask Mandate Issued For Hoboken, With Exceptions

MAPLEWOOD announced last week that the Township Committee has approved a mandate for people to wear masks in all indoor settings, except while eating. The mandate applies to both businesses and public settings, for everyone over 2. There are exceptions to the mask mandate for those who have a medical exemption.

MONTCLAIR rolled out a 30-day indoor mask mandate earlier this month. All local businesses and venues that are open to the public must require both staff and customers/visitors to wear a face covering over their nose and mouth while they’re inside the establishment and within 6 feet of other people. Exemptions include kids under 2, people with disabilities who can’t wear a mask, or people who are eating or drinking inside any establishment that serves food or beverages. The mandate also doesn’t apply to certain gatherings, including religious services and political activities, which are “constitutionally protected.”

MORRISTOWN re-instituted a mask mandate for all local businesses and venues open to the public. Masks can be removed when eating or drinking inside an establishment. Mayor Tim Dougherty said the move was due to a spike in new COVID-19 cases and the emergence of the omicron variant.

PATERSON brought back a mask mandate in all buildings owned or operated by the city. All employees, regardless of vaccination status, must wear masks at all times when indoors.

RIDGEWOOD’S revived indoor mask mandate covers all municipal buildings, effective Dec. 30. It applies to everyone, regardless of vaccination status.

SOUTH ORANGE has an executive order requiring an indoor mask mandate for all people, regardless of vaccination status, in all public facilities and businesses in the Township. Exemptions include kids under 2, people with medical conditions and employees working in high heat settings, as well as people who are actively eating or drinking in a restaurant.

UNION CITY brought back a citywide mask mandate, which requires everyone 2 years of age and older to wear a face covering while indoors at most public facilities. Exceptions include people who are actively eating or drinking, or those who are socially distanced at least 6 feet apart for an extended period, such as at a desk in an office.

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