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Chairs of Senate and Assembly Education and Health Committees Voice Support for Mask Mandate in NJ Schools

The chairs of the New Jersey Senate and Assembly Education and Health Committees today released the following statements in support of Governor Murphy’s announcement that masks will be required in the indoor premises of all public, private and parochial preschool, elementary and secondary school buildings for the 2021-2022 school year:


Senator M. Teresa Ruiz, (D-Essex), chair of the Senate Education Committee:

“As COVID cases continue to rise, I am relieved to hear that masks will be required within schools across the state. Masks are our first line of defense against this virus and this will be critical in protecting our students, educators, support staff and their families this fall.”


Assemblywoman Pamela R. Lampitt, (D-Camden, Burlington), chair of the Assembly Education Committee:

“The Governor’s decision to mandate masks for students, teachers and staff this fall is one that will not only allow our children to attend school in-person, but will also help save lives. COVID positive cases are rising in New Jersey and the Delta variant is rapidly growing. Masks have proven to help mitigate the spread of COVID-19.”


Senator Joseph F. Vitale, (D-Middlesex), chair of the Senate Health, Human Services and Senior Citizens’ Committee:

“We learned over parts of the last two academic years that distance learning, or remote learning, is not always conducive to the best learning for New Jersey school students. No one wants to see school doors closed come September, and this mask mandate will at least allow on-site learning and give some semblance of normality to the learning environment. This is the right call and safe call, even if it is unpopular with some. The surge of the Delta variant has put us in a position where measures like this must be taken in order to ensure the safety of students, faculty and staff alike, while also achieving learning objectives.”


Assemblyman Herb Conaway, Jr., (D-Burlington), chair of the Assembly Health Committee:

“We must continue to follow the science, take every precaution, and keep all the residents of New Jersey safe. This is a commonsense decision on the part of Governor Murphy. This safety requirement will allow students to safely learn from their teachers in face-to-face settings and receive an education with all the resources that a school has to offer. Our shared duty requires us to focus on saving lives.”