Among all 50 states, New Jersey has suffered the second worst COVID-19 outbreak with 1,855 infections and 139 deaths per 100,000. These outcomes are only slightly better than New York, the state that suffered the worst outbreak. New Jersey’s high population density and close proximity to New York City contributed to the high infection rate. However, ever since May 25th, New Jersey has seen a significant decline in COVID-19-related hospitalizations. On Tuesday, New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy announced that the state will end its stay at home order and allow for larger gatherings. New Jersey is one of the last states to remove its restrictions.
Late April saw the peak of New Jersey’s COVID-19 crisis. Throughout May, the number of infections and deaths declined significantly. Early June saw a stabilization of the numbers, though June 3rd saw an uptick to 110 deaths, a number higher than the least deadly days in May. Still, 110 deaths on June 3rd is far lower than the peak of 458 deaths recorded on April 30th.
“With more and more of our businesses reopening, we are no longer requiring you to stay at home, but we are asking you to continue being responsible and safe,” said Gov. Murphy at a press briefing. He also announced he would sign an executive order allowing indoor gatherings at 25% of a building’s capacity or 50 people total. Outdoor gatherings will be increased from 25 to 100 people except for religious services or political gatherings, for which larger crowds may gather. Murphy retains the social distancing requirement of standing 6 feet apart when in a group and the use of face coverings.
Pools will be allowed to reopen on June 15th followed by recreation and entertainment businesses on June 22nd.