Campus & Community

As New Jersey Reopens, FDU Students Voice Concerns

By Amaya Morales

Managing Editor

With COVID-19 cases slowly going down in New Jersey– with 382 new cases reported on Monday, down from a daily high of 4,400 on April 15 — the state is in Stage 2 of the plan to reopen. 

While there is joy that the stay-at-home mandate ended after three months on June 9,  FDU students are concerned that the speed of the Garden State’s reopening could alter the plan to return to campus in August.

On June 15, restaurants were able to open if they offered outdoor dining. Customers could go out to eat without wearing a mask while seated at an outdoor table. A week later on June 22, personal care places such as hair and nail salons opened with workers and customers required to wear masks and employees wearing gloves at all times.

 “[New Jersey] solely opened up the restaurants for economic purposes … It is a little too soon, being that many people are still getting infected and there are issues where people aren’t responsible enough to wear masks or refuse to wear one. It most likely will affect us when we get back to school because I see a lot of people relying on the word-of-mouth to whether or not people have the virus,” said Viviana Mata, a senior majoring in human physiology, via text.

Lexi Martinez, a senior studying criminal justice, agreed that everything is opening too fast, via text from Florida.

“I think businesses opening this early when we have no clear idea as to when a vaccine will be discovered will hurt us extremely hard in the fall, due to the cold and possibly into the spring semester,” she wrote. 

Still, the next step, Stage 3, is a “question of weeks and not months,” said Gov. Phil Murphy, according to NJ.com.

Stage 3 will include indoor dining, bars and other entertainment facilities with restrictions, and it is the final step before a vaccine or treatment is made widely available.

Pictures by Amaya Morales

Restaurants such Rumba Cubana, Jeong Yook and Applebee’s have adapted to the outdoor dining order by using part of their parking space to seat guests.