Mask confusion in NJ: Where you need and don’t need one now
The public transportation mask mandate was recently extended by the CDC through May 3. But that was short-lived after a federal judge from Florida on Monday said the mask mandate on airplanes and other forms of public transportation was unconstitutional, saying the CDC overstepped its authority while declaring the mask rule invalid.
Where do I NOT need a mask in and around the New Jersey area?
Face masks are no longer required for vaccinated people in outdoor public spaces or indoor spaces in New Jersey such as state buildings, retail stores, supermarkets, gyms, movie theaters, banquet halls, concert venues, barbershops, hair and nail salons, massage parlors, casinos, restaurants, and bars, and more. Businesses, however, may still require face coverings for employees and customers.
New Jersey schools have lifted the mask mandate for students, educators, staff, and visitors. But again, schools may choose to implement their own mask rules.
NJ Transit is no longer requiring masks on trains, buses and lightrail. Gov. Phil Murphy said masks will be a personal preference on New Jersey public transit.
PATCO (Port Authority Transit Corporation Speedline, which runs between Philadelphia and Camden County) announced that effective immediately, face masks are optional while riding PATCO. The change comes as a result of new guidance from The Transportation Security Administration (TSA).
Amtrak employees and passengers are no longer required to wear masks while on board trains or in stations.
SEPTA (Southeastern Pennsylvania Transportation Authority) says masks will not be required in vehicles, stations, and concourses.
Port Authority says the mask mandate has been lifted at Newark Liberty International Airport and Teterboro Airport.
Most airlines have lifted the mask-wearing policy for employees and customers including JetBlue, United, Delta, Southwest, American, Alaska, Spirit, and Frontier.
Uber and Lyft both announced that drivers and riders no longer are required to wear masks. According to Lyft, "as always drivers or riders can decline to accept or cancel any ride they don't wish to take." Both companies are no longer requiring people to sit in the back seat but Uber said "to give drivers space" we ask that riders only use the front seat if it's required because of the size of their group."
New Jersey Performing Arts Center (NJPAC) does not require masks but select shows may require stricter protocols upon artist request.
The Prudential Center in Newark also said that unless required by the artist or promoter of a particular show, guests will no longer be required to wear masks to attend events, including New Jersey Devils games.
PNC Bank Arts Center in Holmdel has dropped its masks mandate unless an artist or promoter requires them.
Madison Square Garden guidelines no longer require guests to wear masks to attend events at indoor entertainment venues but please note, that certain events may have their own COVID-19 requirements.
Yankee Stadium and CitiField have announced that all fully vaccinated guests can go mask-free. Masks, however, are requested to be worn in bathrooms and other communal indoor locations
Where do I still have to wear a mask in and around the New Jersey area?
New Jersey hospitals, doctor's offices, dentist's offices, and all healthcare settings including long-term care facilities still require masks.
Port Authority says per current New York public health guidance, the mask mandate remains in effect at The Port Authority Midtown Bus Terminal, George Washington Bridge Bus Station, World Trade Center Oculus Transportation Hub, LaGuardia Airport, JFK International Airport, and New York Stewart International Airport.
PATH System says the mask mandate remains in effect for the interstate PATH System including stations and platforms with the exception of open-air platforms.
Jen Ursillo is a reporter and anchor for New Jersey 101.5. You can reach her at firstname.lastname@example.org
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