You can protect yourself and your family from the spread of the coronavirus known as COVID-19. The virus that causes COVID-19 is a novel coronavirus that was first identified during an investigation into an outbreak in Wuhan, China. It’s a respiratory illness that can spread from person to person.
Below is more information on what you can do to stay healthy, details about resources available to small businesses, and where you can go if you need more information about paid sick leave or need to file for unemployment insurance. This page is updated regularly with new resources as they become available.
The State of New Jersey has a COVID-19 Information Hub that provides New Jerseyans with the most up-to-date information about COVID-19 and the State's response, including information about services such as food assistance and small business assistance.
How can I protect myself and my family?
The best way to prevent illness is to avoid being exposed to this virus. The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) recommends everyday preventive actions to help prevent the spread of respiratory diseases.
- Avoiding close contact with people who are sick.
- Avoiding touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.
- Washing your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. Use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol if soap and water are not available.
- Taking careful steps to avoid crowds and stay six feet away from others whenever possible.
Who is at risk?
Cases of COVID-19 and instances of community spread are being reported in a growing number of states, including New Jersey. That’s why it’s important to take action now to avoid exposure to the virus.
Older adults and people who have underlying chronic medical conditions like heart or lung disease or diabetes seem to be at higher risk for developing more serious complications from COVID-19 illness.
These individuals should take everyday precautions to keep space between themselves and others by:
- Keeping away from others who are sick and limiting close contact.
- Avoiding crowds as much as possible.
- Avoiding cruise travel and non-essential air travel.
- Staying at home as much as possible to further reduce your risk of being exposed.
What should I do if I feel sick?
If you don’t feel well, call your primary care doctor. You should also:
- Stay home when you are sick.
- Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.
- Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.
Governor Murphy’s office has activated 2-1-1 to assist with questions regarding the coronavirus outbreak. All residents with questions or concerns about COVID-19 and available resources can now call 2-1-1.
You can also text NJCOVID to 898-211 to receive text information and stay informed. To receive live text assistance, you can text your zip code to 898-211.
You can also call the New Jersey Coronavirus Hotline at 1-800-222-1222 or 1-800-962-1253 if you are calling from an out-of-state number. Trained health care professionals are available to answer your questions about coronavirus.
A list of coronavirus testing sites in New Jersey is available here.
Help for Small Businesses
Small business loan applications have resumed. Contact your lending institution for more information.
Help for New Jerseyans
New Jersey’s Department of Labor and Workforce has extensive guidance available here if you want to learn more about paid sick leave or need to file for unemployment.
The U.S. Department of Labor has launched a new online tool to help workers determine if they qualify for paid sick leave due to the coronavirus. Click here for more information.
Essential workers have access to emergency child care. Click here for more information.
Information for renters and landlords can be found here.
Information for homeowners who have questions about mortgage payments is available here.
New Jersey has a website with information on companies that are hiring workers. Click here for more information.
Employers in critical industries should submit information about openings with urgent hiring needs related to COVID- 19 here.
The New Jersey Motor Vechicle Commission has information here about agencies, road testing, and inspection facilities.
Information about Stimulus Checks
The distribution of federal stimulus checks has begun and will occur automatically with no action required for most people. Click here to access the IRS’s online tool to track your payment.
If you do not file a federal tax return, click here for more information on how to receive a stimulus check.
Social Security beneficiaries who are not typically required to file tax returns will have payments automatically deposited into their bank accounts.
The IRS has established a website to answer other questions about direct stimulus checks to taxpayers and to help taxpayers, businesses and others affected by the coronavirus. Click here for more information.
What Can I Do to Help?
The State of New Jersey welcomes offers from individuals and businesses that want to help the Garden State. Click here for a comprehensive list of ways to help.
Anyone who has personal protective equipment (PPE) they wish to donate like N95 respirators, face shields, protective goggles, surgical masks, or other protective equipment, click here.
If you know someone who needs food assistance, please visit this website for more information.
If you have medical training and want to volunteer, click here.
The best thing we can do during this difficult time is to avoid exposure to the virus, stay at home as much as possible, and avoid non-essential travel. If you have to go outside, keep your distance -- stay at least six feet away from others -- and wear a cloth face covering.
What is Congress doing?
Congressman Pallone is working hard to stop the spread of the novel coronavirus, protect the health of all Americans, and provide New Jerseyans with peace of mind during this time of economic uncertainty. He has helped write four bills that Congress passed and were signed into law.
He helped pass the Paycheck Protection Program and Health Care Enhancement Act helps small businesses pay their employees, provides critical support to health care providers and hospitals and establishes a framework to scale up COVID-19 testing nationwide. Testing is the one of the most important tools we have in our fight against the coronavirus. This funding will be used to help states, localities, territories and tribes purchase and perform COVID-19 tests, conduct contact tracing, scale up laboratory capacity and support our public health workforce.
In March, the House passed the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act, the third major legislation passed by Congress to respond to the coronavirus pandemic. The President signed the bill into law the same day. The CARES Act provides essential assistance to the American people, health care workers, hospitals, small businesses and state and local governments that have been seriously impacted by the coronavirus pandemic. This legislation provides much needed financial relief to laid-off or furloughed workers through increased and extended unemployment insurance so they will continue to receive a paycheck in the weeks and months ahead. It also puts money in the pockets of struggling Americans, and provides grants and loans to small businesses to help them better weather the ongoing economic storm. Click here to read more.
Congressman Pallone helped lead the passage of the Families First Coronavirus Response Act, which included critical health care provisions from the Energy and Commerce Committee, which he chairs. The legislation provides paid leave, establishes free coronavirus testing for everyone, supports strong unemployment benefits, expands food assistance for vulnerable children and families, protects frontline health workers, and provides additional funding to states for the ongoing economic consequences of the pandemic. Last week, President Trump signed this bill into law.
This legislation builds on the $8.3 billion emergency coronavirus spending package passed and signed into law earlier this year. That package included support for state and local health agencies, vaccine and treatment development, and loans for affected small businesses to lessen the economic blow of this public health emergency. The State of New Jersey is directly receiving at least $15.6 million from this funding package.
Where can I go if I need more information?
The CDC regularly updates its website with timely information on the public health crisis.
You can also visit the New Jersey's COVID-19 Information Hub.