New Jersey to open outdoor dining, retail shops on June 15 as tri-state region slowly eases restrictions

Health, Fitness & Food

New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy (D) speaks at the Coronavirus press briefing in Trenton, New Jersey.

Michael Brochstein | Barcroft Media | Getty Images

New Jersey is on track to enter phase two of its reopening plan on June 15, allowing restaurants to reopen for outdoor dining and retail shops to welcome back customers with certain modifications, Gov. Phil Murphy announced Monday.

The state expects to allow hair salons and barbershops to reopen on June 22, he added. Murphy said gyms and fitness centers will then open “very soon,” but did not offer a specific timeline.

“We want our economy back up and running,” Murphy told reporters at a news briefing. ”We want people to get back out to our downtowns and main streets, to our shops and restaurants and to their places of work, but we will not do that at the cost of the reckless disregard for their health and safety.”

Currently, restaurants and nonessential retailers in New Jersey are only allowed to provide curbside service. On June 15, shops will be allowed to reopen at 50% capacity, he said, and restaurants can only roepen their outdoor dining areas. 

Murphy cautioned that people, particularly those with underlying health conditions, should continue to practice physical distancing and safety precautions even as more businesses reopen. He said people should continue to wear a mask and warned that any decisions about reopening are contingent on the health data continuing to decline.

“Just because the calendar says June 15 doesn’t mean that everyone should just go back to what they were doing and the way they were doing it pre-Covid,” Murphy said. ”There is no cure. There is no vaccine. There is no proven therapeutic. The only cure is responsibility. Safety will continue to be our number one priority.”

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