SOUTH ORANGE, NJ — Village President Sheena Collum has provided the following announcements, including the loss of another South Orange resident and the governor's executive order that masks must be worn while shopping:


I am so sorry to report that South Orange has lost yet another community member, a 62-year-old female. I ask we all continue to pray for the families, friends, and colleagues who are grieving the loss of their loved ones.

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A Look at South Orange by the Numbers
As of noon today, our community has 50 confirmed positive cases of COVID-19. To put this into perspective, 100 residents have been given access to the limited testing available (e.g., they’ve exhibited the required fever and respiratory symptoms), and of that number, 50 results have returned positive and 50 have returned negative. Included below is also the age distribution of positive test cases.

Take Steps to Protect Yourself:

  • Stay at home — except to get essentials like food and medicine.
  • If you have to go out, keep your distance — at least six feet away from others — and wear a cloth face covering. Remember that it is now a NJ state requirement that all customers and employees wear appropriate face covering within retail business establishments, including grocery stores (see below). Please choose cloth face coverings over surgical masks or N95 respirators, as it is critical that these are available for first responders and healthcare professionals.
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after you have been in a public place or after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing.
  • If soap and water are not readily available, use a hand sanitizer containing at least 60 percent alcohol. Cover all surfaces of your hands and rub them together until they feel dry.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.
  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  • Stay home if you are sick, except to get medical care.
  • Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when you cough or sneeze, or use the inside of your elbow.
  • Visit the CDC site here to learn more on how to protect yourself and what to do if you are sick.

Latest from Governor Murphy, Executive Order No. 122

  • You must wear a face covering (this is no longer optional). The order requires “customers to wear a face covering when entering any essential business open to the public, with limited exceptions” (e.g. health-related reasons and children under age 2). If you are not wearing a face covering, you can be denied service.
  • The physical operations of all non-essential construction projects shall cease at 8 p.m. on Friday, April 10. For homeowners or renters, projects already underway with a construction crew of five or fewer individuals and involving individual single-family homes or an individual apartment unit where an individual already resides may continue.

Local Reminders

Latex Gloves and Masks Cannot Be Recycled
Latex gloves and masks are not recyclable materials. Giordano Recycling has had multiple loads contaminated by these products. Residents are reminded not to dispose of latex gloves and masks in recycling toters. These items are NOT considered household recycling and should be properly disposed as trash. Any toter containing unacceptable material that is not recyclable will not be collected.

Do NOT Flush Disposable Wipes
Members of the public are advised to follow the Centers for Disease Control recommendations regarding cleaning surfaces with disinfecting wipes to reduce the spread of COVID-19. Members of the public, however, are reminded NOT to flush these disinfecting wipes, paper towels, and/or similar items down the toilet. They must be disposed of properly by placing them in trash cans. Flushing these products down toilets will lead to clogs in the sewers and cause backups and overflows at wastewater treatment facilities, including the Joint Meeting of Essex and Union Counties, thereby creating an additional public health risk in the midst of the Coronavirus pandemic.

Even wipes labeled “flushable” should NOT be flushed down the toilet. They too can clog pipes and interfere with sewage collection and treatment. Wipes, including “flushable” wipes, and paper towels do not break down like toilet paper. As such, please dispose of these products properly so as to allow the Joint Meeting of Essex and Union Counties and its dedicated sewer operators to continue to protect the health and safety of our communities during this crisis by operating the system properly.

Childcare for Essential Workers
The YMCA has temporarily opened two of its licensed child care facilities in East Orange and Livingston for families of health care workers, first responders, and other essential personnel who need care for their children during the coronavirus pandemic. Families do not need to be YMCA members to utilize this program.

Locations, ages, and operating hours include:

East Orange YMCA, 314 William St., East Orange
Ages 3–13
6:30 a.m. – 6:00 p.m. Monday through Friday

Peanut Shell Early Learning Childhood Center (part of the West Essex YMCA), 7 Regent St., #706, Livingston
Ages 6 weeks to 13 years
6:30 a.m. – 6 p.m. Monday through Friday

To learn more and register for the program, visit the YMCA Emergency Child Care page.

If You Need Help

I know these times are incredibly difficult and can cause a great deal of stress. You need to remember that you are not alone. Please take advantage of the numbers provided below.

  • Crisis Text Line: Test ‘NJ” to 741741
  • Family Helpline: 1-800-843-5437
  • Domestic Violence Hotline: 1-800-572-7233
  • Mental Health Hotline: 866-202-4357

Sheena Collum
Village President


Read More: Essex County Continues Weequahic Park Coronavirus Testing

Read More: Additional Lives Lost in Maplewood

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