Union City orders residents to wear masks in public, not just in businesses

The mandate is the first of its kind in New Jersey; property tax due date extended to June 30

Face masks are now a must.

As the death toll from COVID-19 continues to climb in New Jersey, Gov. Phil Murphy recently signed an executive order mandating that residents must now wear face masks or coverings at all times while in a business.

For some towns and cities, that may not be enough to curtail the spread. In Hudson County, Union City has become the first municipality in the county and the state to order residents to wear protective gear in public at all times.

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Mayor Brian Stack signed the executive order into effect on April 16. According to Stack, these could include surgical masks, cloth masks, scarves, or bandanas.

“The important thing is to keep your nose and mouth covered,” Stack said in a COVID-19 update.

Bad stats are the cause

Union City has overtaken North Bergen with the highest number of cases and the highest number of deaths in North Hudson. As of April 18, 1,738 residents have tested positive for COVID-19, and 92 residents have died.

Stack offered his thoughts and prayers to the families of those who have succumbed. He noted that Union City is a very densely populated community and that more people are getting tested than ever before, which are possible explanations for the increase in cases.

“Parties, social events or gatherings of any kind will not be tolerated,” Stack said. “This may seem like a severe measure, but we must take serious action for the safety of ourselves, our family, and all the residents of Union City.”

Stack also advised residents to check in with their families, friends ,and neighbors, whether by phone, text, Facebook, or social media.

“Having someone to talk to is very important, especially during this time,” Stack said.

Residents in need of assistance may call Stack’s office at 201-348-5757 or his cell phone at 201-376-1942.

“We are one Union City,” he said. “We are stronger together, and we will get through this together.”

In a letter published Monday on The Hudson Reporter‘s Union City home page, the mayor announced the city is extending the due date for property taxes to June 30.

For updates on this and other stories, check www.hudsonreporter.com and follow us on Twitter @hudson_reporter. Daniel Israel can be reached at disrael@hudsonreporter.com.