Governor Murphy: Holidays Have to Look Different This Year

TRENTON, NJ – New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy said the holidays in New Jersey have to look different this year and it started last week with his cap on family gatherings.  Under that executive order, Murphy instated a cap on how many people New Jersey families can have at the dinner table this coming Thanksgiving to just ten.   Murphy will not be hosting another COVID-19 press conference before Thanksgiving.  Many in New Jersey feared Murphy would be announcing new draconian lockdown orders today, but he did not.   The governor did elude to state-level remediation in the near future if numbers continue to rise, a departure from his previous “scalpel” doctrine to handle outbreaks at the local and community level instead of using statewide blunt force restrictions.

Murphy reminded New Jerseyans about his indoor gathering restrictions that will most likely continue through the Christmas and Hannukah holidays through New Year’s Eve and well into 2021.

“We know that the holidays in a normal year can be more stressful, but this year even more so,” Murphy said in his Monday COVID-19 briefing. “As so many of you are making arrangements that don’t include family and friends who you yearn to see.”

Murphy said the New Jersey Department of Health has set up a mental health hotline for residents who are finding it hard to cope with the restrictions placed by Murphy.   This weekend, Murphy extended the COVID-19 public health emergency for another 30 days.

“We are now in the midst of a second wave and we don’t know how long this new wave of cases will hang in,” Murphy said. “Because of this, we can’t let our guard down and ask you to continue to using your common sense.”

Murphy said 3,592 new positive cases of COVID-19 were reported overnight. The PCR positivity rate was 8.65% and the statewide rate of transmission is now 1.62, meaning each person who contracts COVID-19 spreads it to 1.62 other people.

Watch: New Jersey Governor Interrupted, Yelled at by Protester While Dining Out