People fully vaccinated against COVID-19 will soon be able to go maskless at work in New Jersey if their employer allows it.
Gov. Phil Murphy announced during his Wednesday coronavirus news briefing that he would be signing an executive order that clears the way for employers to allow workers who can prove vaccine status to ditch the face mask and social-distancing measures starting Friday, June 4.
All workplace health and safety protocols continue at non-public indoor offices and working spaces, however, the employer can opt to make changes for its workforce.
Murphy also announced Wednesday that he would be rescinding part of an executive order that required businesses and nonprofits to operate with a minimum amount of in-person interactions to reduce on-site staffing indoors. The ending of the requirement clears a path for business to increase the number of employees in the office.
Workers at state offices and worksites must continue to mask up, the first-term Democrat said.
Murphy reminded everyone that coworkers shouldn't face stigma if they still choose to wear a mask.
Earlier this week, Murphy announced that New Jersey would be dropping its indoor masking mandate in many public places. The move puts New Jersey in line with Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) guidance that fully vaccinated people can remove their masks indoors and outside.
People who have yet to have two weeks pass since their second dose of the Moderna and Pfizer coronavirus vaccines or the one-dose Johnson & Johnson vaccine are urged to still wear a face covering indoors. Murphy said they are putting the responsibility of masking on individuals.
COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations have been on the decline for several weeks. On Wednesday, New Jersey announced 352 new PCR test-confirmed coronavirus cases. The most recent rate of transmission was at 0.75 and the positivity rate was below 3%.
Larger Groups at NJ Day Cares
As of Wednesday, there is no more 15-child group limits in child care classes. The groups "will be returned to their normal regulated limits," Murphy said.
"This is an important piece of getting our economy back working for more parents," Murphy said.