New Jersey state employees are expected to return to their offices on October 18, one month later than previously announced, NJ.com reported.
The initial return date of September 7 was pushed off to give employees time to align with the new vaccine mandate, which requires all state employees and school staff to either vaccinate or fully mask and be tested bi-weekly at minimum.
School employees and students are expected to be masked regardless of vaccination status due to the spread of the delta variant.
The vaccine or test mandate for public and private healthcare employees who work in hospitals, care facilities, prisons and other high-risk settings will be implemented on September 7.
Employees are currently required to spend two days working in-person, and must wear masks in the office.
“Due to the prevalence and rampant spread of the delta variant, the state is taking aggressive steps to protect the state workforce while continuing to provide vital government services,” Murphy spokesman Alex Altman said.
“State employees must continue to report to their offices at minimum 2-3 times per week until October 18, and many are already in person full-time to provide critical services.”
New Jersey reported over 1,700 confirmed COVID-19 cases this week, the first time since May that cases broke 1,000. The number of hospitalized patients with coronavirus is 1,022.