NEWARK, NJ — The city will begin passing out masks to residents as a new rule requiring residents to wear them out in public and in stores goes into effect, Mayor Ras Baraka said on Monday.
Newark has 1,569 positive cases and 60 deaths, a substantial jump from yesterday’s total of 46 deaths. The city continues to lead the state in the number of cases, according to the New Jersey Department of Death.
While it was not clear how many or which residents would receive masks, Baraka encouraged residents on Saturday to use homemade masks as well, demonstrating how to create a protective face covering per United States Surgeon General Dr. Jerome Adams’ online tutorial released on April 4.
“You can put a shirt on your face, a bandana on your face, because we are being protected from you,” he said. “Our effort is that more of us make it to the next day.”
The city has already been proactively handing out face masks to its homeless population, Baraka added. Following the footsteps of other cities and states, Newark will begin mandating that everyone who enters a supermarket or store wear a face covering.
As students prepare to enter a stay-cation period for spring break on April 13, Newark Public Schools Superintendent Roger Leon is alerting the community that the district’s 16 free lunch sites will remain open to students.
Students and families can find the meal site closest to them by visiting the district’s website.