TRENTON, NJ — Office employees will be allowed to return to work without the need to wear masks or social distance, as long as they have proof of being vaccinated against the coronavirus, under Gov. Phil Murphy’s latest executive order.
The order, which takes effect on June 4, also lifts minimum staffing levels in the workplace and allows employers to call back employees who have been working remotely — an accommodation put in place at the height of the COVID-19 crisis.
The new rules are designed to give employers more guidance and flexibility in an office setting, according to Murphy, who made the announcement at his May 26 COVID-19 press briefing.
However, employers can impose more restrictive policies on masking and social distancing, cannot restrict individuals from wearing masks and cannot penalize or retaliate against individuals who choose to wear a mask.
“With all metrics continuing to trend in the right direction, I am happy to be able to take this additional step in the return to normalcy,” he said in a release. “This pandemic has been extremely disruptive for employers and employees alike, and this new guidance will benefit both. A vaccinated employee is a safe employee, and being able to forgo a mask at the office is just one of the many benefits to getting vaccinated against COVID-19.”
Masks will still be required at schools and youth summer camps, as well as at child care centers, where class sizes will return to their normal regulated limits — lifting the current cap of 15
Also on June 4, the following changes will go into effect:
- Removing the general indoor gathering limit, which is currently at 50 people.
- Removing the indoor gathering limit for political gatherings, weddings, funerals, memorial services, performances, and other catered and commercial events, which is currently at 250 people.
- Removing 30 percent capacity limitation for indoor large venues with a fixed-seating capacity over 1,000.
Click here for Executive Order 243.
On May 28, indoor masking requirements in public spaces will be lifted for those who are fully vaccinated, including at most service and retail businesses.
Below is Gov. Murphy’s May 26 press briefing: