As part of a new campaign known as #MaskUpJC, Jersey City will be mailing out face masks to 120,000 households citywide, officials said today.
“Absent a vaccine, wearing a mask is one of the few proven effective ways we can dramatically decrease transmission, and we want to further our efforts to support residents and encourage everyone to remain diligent as we get through this together,” Mayor Steven Fulop said in a statement.
“My top priority is to protect our residents’ health and safety, and the goal is to avoid another surge which would also inflict further damage on people’s mental health, our struggling businesses, and the local economy.”
Specifically, the #MaskUpJC initiative centers on a citywide mask distribution, where five city-branded, 3-ply masks are being sent via mail carrier to all 120,000 households throughout Jersey City.
Furthermore, the city is distributing 2,000 stickers to businesses that read, “MASK UP to Enter.”
Business owners can put the stickers on their storefront windows to encourage customer compliance. All city employees will also receive cloth masks in addition to the Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) that has been distributed throughout the pandemic.
Along with the masks, the #MaskUpJC packages contain a letter from the mayor, which encourages residents to sign up for the city’s city’s emergency alert system and a “Mask Up JC” poster.
Since March, the city has distributed over 200,000 masks and PPE to senior buildings, nonprofit organizations, local businesses, and residents.
Like the rest of New Jersey, Jersey City has seen a rise in COVID-19 cases in recent weeks.
On August 13th, the city reported 13 new confirmed cases of the coronavirus, the highest total in about a month, according to the city’s COVID-19 dashboard.
On September 29th, the city reported 23 new cases, and the highest single day total since July, with the average seven day cases still at just 10.
Now, as of just yesterday, November 4th, 60 people tested positive for the virus and the seven day average has more than quadrupled – sitting at 43.
“Our data shows that the major contributor to the current moderate increase in cases is in-home family gatherings, which further supports our efforts to ensure everyone remains compliant,” added Health and Human Services Director Stacey Flanagan.
“We need everyone to be responsible and do their part to avoid further contagion by wearing masks, maintaining hygiene, and getting tested when they’re exposed or show symptoms.”
In conjunction with the administration’s ongoing efforts to provide the public with critical resources, HHS is also significantly expanding access to COVID-19 testing and flu vaccines.
Several mobile testing units are being deployed throughout the city to bring health services directly to our most vulnerable populations including senior residents and public housing sites.
Additionally, rapid testing will also soon be available at popup sites citywide, with a 15 minute turnaround time for results. City health officials are targeting communities with higher positivity rates in order to identify, quarantine, and treat those with the virus.
More information on the campaign can be found here.