NJ urges you to mask yourself for the 4

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As New Jersey residents prepare to celebrate July 4, State Health Commissioner Judy Persichilli says don’t forget the mask. Even with New Jersey’s high vaccination rate, she says even the vaccinated may want to hide in large gatherings.

Gov. Phil Murphy lifted all in-state and out-of-state assembly limits as well as the mask’s warrant. Many cities are planning to resume their annual fireworks displays after having to cancel last year. However, a number of coastal towns have canceled the festivities this year, fearing large crowds. (you can get a list of cities that have fireworks celebrations here)

Persichilli says it’s important to remember that COVID-19 is still circulating and has encouraged people to keep their celebrations safe, especially if someone is not vaccinated. “Although fully vaccinated individuals are encouraged to return to their normal activities,” said Persichilli, “they should not be discouraged from wearing a mask for high-risk activities, such as being in a crowded indoor location.” She encouraged people to keep their gatherings outside.

New Jersey is approaching 5,000,000 fully immunized residents. The number of new cases has declined, but the Murphy administration continues to be concerned about the Delta variant. 15.6% of all new COVID cases are Delta infections. It is considered to be more transmissible, but does not appear to cause more serious illness. State health officials say the majority of new cases occur among those who have not yet been vaccinated.

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