Local COVID-19 Guidelines – Newark, New Jersey

The COVID-19 cases in Newark, have spiked recently and experts believe that we may have hit a “second wave”. Newark was hit especially hard, which has caused Governor Phil Murphy to tighten up the current restrictions.

Q: What Is Newark’s Reopening Plan?

A: Newark doesn’t have a plan to reopen at this time. With the number of cases rising daily, officials believe that continuing to reopen would be irresponsible. Newark officials saw how things went for states who tried to reopen too soon, so we’re going take it slow. Governor Phil Murphy believes that listening to doctors and scientists’ advice is essential now, and he isn’t going to do anything too quickly.

Q: Is It Mandatory to Wear a Mask In Newark During COVID-19 Pandemic?

A: Yes. All Newark residents over the age of three are required to wear face masks when in public. Masks are not required outdoors; however, if it isn’t possible to social distance, residents are required to wear masks outside.

Q: What Businesses and Services Are Open in Newark?

A: For now, all businesses and services are open. With the recent spike in cases, changes are being made. All businesses are required to close every night at 8PM. There could also be changes made that can affect restaurants, nail salons, hair salons, tattoo parlors, and gyms.

While Newark businesses remain open, business owners and customers need to be especially vigilant when it comes to following the guidelines.

Q: Are Restaurants Open in Newark?

A: Restaurants can offer pickup, delivery, and curbside delivery of food and alcohol. Indoor dining is also allowed, but restaurants need to follow strict guidelines. As of October 27, 2020, restaurants and all other businesses are required to close at 8PM. The other guidelines include:

  • The number of patrons is limited to 25 percent of the restaurant’s capacity.
  • Parties are limited to 8 people unless everyone is a member of the same household.
  • Tables need to be spaced out six feet apart.
  • Food and drinks can only be consumed while seated.
  • Face masks are required except when guests are eating or drinking at their table.

Restaurants that have outdoor seating must also follow guidelines. These include:

  • Parties are limited to 8 people unless everyone is a member of the same household.
  • Tables must be spaced six feet apart.
  • Reservations are encouraged to control customer traffic.
  • Guests need to understand that they need to wear a face mask if they go inside to use the bathroom.
  • Groups must remain six feet apart, even when they aren’t sitting.

Q: Are Gyms Open in Newark?

A: Yes, gyms are open, but owners must follow strict guidelines. The number of people allowed in the gym at one time is limited to 25 percent of the certificate occupancy. Machines need to be placed at least six feet apart, and members and employees also need to remain six feet apart.

Only equipment that can be cleaned and sanitized by the clients can be used. The employees are responsible for making sure that the members are cleaning the machines after use. Businesses can also employ a professional electrostatic spraying service by a local commercial cleaning company in order to maintain strict sanitization in addition to the staff’s measures.

Q: What Does Newark Define As “Essential Businesses” During COVID?

A: There are several businesses that are considered essential and remained open throughout the entire pandemic. These include:

  • Grocery stores
  • Convenience stores
  • Food delivery
  • Pharmacies
  • Medical marijuana dispensaries
  • Gas stations
  • Banks
  • Laundromats
  • Pet stores
  • Hardware and home improvement stores
  • Liquor stores
  • Car dealerships
  • Post offices
  • Office supply shops
  • Restaurants through takeout and delivery only

Q: Are Large Gatherings Allowed in Newark?

A: Yes. Attending a gathering is allowed as long as the event complies with the set guidelines.

  • Indoor gatherings are limited to 25 people or 25 percent of the room’s capacity, whichever is lower. All guests must wear masks and stay six feet apart.
  • Indoor weddings, funerals, or memorial services are limited to 150 people or 25 percent of the room’s capacity, whichever is lower. Social distancing and face masks are also required.
  • Religious gatherings are limited to 150 people or 25 percent of the room’s capacity, whichever is lower.

Outdoor gatherings are also allowed. There is a limit of 500 people, and social distancing must be practiced. If the gathering is for political activity or a religious service, there is no limit to the number of attendees.

Q: How to Keep Business Going During COVID?

A: The best way for business owners to keep things going is to make sure that all required guidelines are followed. They should require all employees and customers to wear masks at all times. Putting up signs to remind customers of social distance is also a good idea. Placing stickers six feet apart will let people know how far to stand from one another. Finally, cleaning and sanitizing the business is essential in keeping people from getting sick.

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