JERSEY CITY, NJ - In a move that could pit civil liberties against public health, Jersey City will require anyone entering a municipal building to undergo a temperature scan.
In a first in the nation move, Mayor Steven Fulop has ordered the installation of state-of-the-art body temperature scanners and mask recognition technology to be installed by a local vendor at every entrance of all Jersey City municipal buildings. Unlike other public health restrictions that come as directives from the state, Jersey City is not compelled to order this additional monitoring.
This would be used to help prevent the spread of COVID19 infections and allow municipal workers to return to work safely Mayor Steven Fulop has said, brushing off suggestions that the move may be seen as an invasion of civil liberties.
Hudson County has already ordered that many of its workers will be required to take a COVID-19 test.
A complaint has already been filed with the ACLU citing invasion of privacy as well as impingement of access to government, although the ACLU has not yet commented on the matter.
Yvonne Balcer, who has raised questions about lack of access to government facilities in the past as well as other restrictions on the public, said there’s a lot of this happening but it won’t likely keep her from attending meetings.
Two other people who asked to remain unnamed because they are both municipal employees shared similar concerns to Balcer and said that they would draw the line at being forced into blood testing or to give a swab sample.
Jersey City has also imposed other restrictions that have raised concerns of critics, such as requiring restaurants to keep track of patrons and to require wearing of face masks in city parks. But the installation of the monitors seems to take a much more significant step.
Sharing his own skepticism was Dr. Felix Roque, the former mayor of West New York Mayor and a local surgeon. “In my opinion, they don’t work, and this is just another way to monitor people.”
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