Poll: NJ residents support return to school, requiring worker vaccinations
Most New Jerseyans are aware that the COVID-19 threat is still real, but at the same time, most are on board with the state's plans to fully reopen schools for in-person instruction in the fall.
In a Rutgers-Eagleton Poll of 1,000 adults released Friday, 63% of respondents "strongly" support and 24% "somewhat" support the full return to school in September, which Gov. Phil Murphy says will happen — families will not have the option to keep their children home for remote learning.
In the same poll, two-thirds of New Jersey adults support colleges and universities requiring all of their students to be vaccinated for the upcoming fall semester.
Sixty-one percent offer strong or mild support to the idea of employers requiring all of their workers to be vaccinated.
A greater percentage of residents (72%) prefer that healthcare institutions mandate the vaccine among employees.
“Like with many aspects of the pandemic, Republicans are in opposition to such requirements, while Democrats are in favor, and independents lie somewhere in between," said poll director Ashley Koning. "Vaccination status has also become another dividing line, with those at least one dose in much more amenable than those who have yet to receive a dose.”
The poll did not ask respondents about mask-wearing at schools in the fall, which is required as of now. Gov. Phil Murphy recently said there's a "chance" that kids can go maskless in the fall.
Half of poll respondents believe the Garden State is moving at the right pace in lifting restrictions and reopening businesses. Eight percent believe the pandemic is "completely" over, while 34% say it's halfway over and 24% say it's far from over.