NEWARK, N.J. — Residents of New Jersey's largest city are being urged to stay home for 10 days, starting Wednesday, in an effort to curb the spread of COVID-19.
Newark Mayor Ras Baraka first made the announcement during a radio interview last Thursday on WBGO-FM.
The mayor asked residents to stay indoors from Nov. 25 to Dec. 4 and only leave their home for essential reasons, such as picking up groceries, emergencies or getting a COVID test.
Essential businesses like supermarkets, pharmacies, gas stations and landromats will remain open, but Baraka asked they close down by 8 p.m. He also asked restaurants in the city to stop offering takeout at 8 p.m.
While the advisory is not mandatory it is strongly encouraged and will be enforced. "Our folks will be on the streets to ensure this is happening," the mayor said.
However, Baraka assured Monday that police will not be ticketing people for being outside during the stay-at-home period.
Newark's positivity rate currently sits at about 21%, with the city's Ironbound section alone seeing a positivity rate of 41%.
The Newark mayor recently instituted curfews in three areas of the city in response to a steep increase in the number of coronavirus cases.
Gov. Phil Murphy announced another 4,383 new cases statewide Tuesday and 48 new deaths, bringing the state's total coronavirus fatalities to just over 15,000 since the pandemic began.
New Jersey's hospitals are also in a dire spot. According to data from COVID Act Now, ICU's in the Garden State are at 100% capacity, signaling a high risk of hospital overload.