(EAST ORANGE, NJ) - In response to Governor Phil Murphy’s plan to reopen state and county parks and golf courses, effective Saturday, May 2, Mayor Ted R. Green issued a firm announcement that all East Orange parks will remain closed.

Starting this weekend, the Department of Public Safety will deploy extra patrols to monitor the parks.

“Please understand that we know how extremely challenging these past seven weeks have been for us, but we must remain steadfast,” said Mayor Green. “As long as our numbers continue to rise, I will not allow our parks to re-open. There is too much at risk.”

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Citing recent statistics, Mayor Green explained that his decision to keep the parks closed is based on scientific data and his goal to do what’s best for the entire community.

As of April 29, East Orange had 1,454 confirmed cases of COVID-19, which represents 10% of Essex County‘s total positive cases and 1.2% of total cases statewide.

“In East Orange, we were suffering from health and income disparities prior to the pandemic. COVID-19 has only made these inequalities worse. The health and safety of the residents of East Orange is my first and top priority,” said Mayor Green. “If we rush and re-open too soon, the consequences could be deadly. For me, that is not an option.”

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