This was another week of progress in the fight against COVID-19, with continued reductions in the numbers of new cases, hospitalizations, ICU admissions, and other key metrics. Our state and county parks and many municipal parks are back open with social distancing orders in place, and other measures are being considered to loosen restrictions based on the improving data. We’re not out of the woods yet, but thanks to the leadership of Governor Murphy and his team and the inspiring work being done by our frontline medical workers, first responders, essential employees, and more, we are seeing some light at the end of the tunnel.
GOV. MURPHY UPDATE
Governor Murphy this week announced several steps to directly confront two of the most challenging aspects of the COVID-19 crisis head-on: its impact on nursing homes and other long term care facilities, and the massive backlog of unemployment claims filed by residents who have lost their jobs due to the crisis.
Long term care facilities have been incredibly hard hit by the coronavirus. The Governor this week engaged a team of experts with national experience to conduct a rapid review of the state’s 575 long-term care facilities to mitigate the impact of COVID-19 and reduce impacts of future outbreaks. Governor Murphy also deployed members of the National Guard to assist with COVID-19 mitigation efforts at long term care facilities.
In the seven weeks since COVID-19 hit New Jersey in mid-March, 1,018,785 unemployment claims have been filed, by far the most ever recorded for a similar period. This massive jump in the number of claims has presented major logistical challenges to the Department of Labor, but the department is rising to the challenge and has now paid out over $1.9 billion in claims to residents, helping thousands of families stay afloat. The Labor Department is working to both clear the existing backlog of claims and stay current on new claims by hiring additional staff, making technology improvements, bringing on an outside call center, and launching a chatbot to answer frequently asked questions.
For up to date information regarding new cases and directives regarding the Coronavirus, visit the state’s dedicated COVID-19 Information Hub or follow Governor Murphy’s official pages on social media.
NJDSC has partnered with the National Democratic Training Committee to offer two sessions of online training courses this Monday and Tuesday, May 11 and 12. Focusing on a range of topics needed to run a successful campaign, the trainings are designed to prepare the next generation of Democratic candidates and campaign operatives. Hundreds of participants have already signed up, but there is still time to join them — add your name today to learn how to take the next step in working to elect more Democrats.
A few weeks ago we asked you to share your stories about dealing with the COVID-19 crisis, and the submissions we received showed a wide range of emotions and experiences. From simply dealing with the anxiety and stress associated with quarantine and health concerns to inspiring stories of hope enduring through challenging times, these stories show that while we’re living apart, we are experiencing many of the same things.