Earlier this week Governor Phil Murphy announced a website information hub for mental health support resources for youth, parents and educators; unveiled the Return and Earn program; and noted that boosters are available for certain Pfizer recipients who completed their initial two-shot course at least six months ago.
COVID Data for Friday, October 1, 2021:
- 1,642 new positive cases for a total of 1,055,006 confirmed cases
- 16 new confirmed deaths for a total of 24,656 confirmed deaths
- The rate of transmission is at 0.92
- 219 cases have been linked to 39 school outbreaks, which is defined as 3 or more laboratory-confirmed cases among students or staff within a 14 day period.
- 11,682,192 vaccine doses have been administered, including 6,456,865 who have received at least one dose, and 5,670,012 who are fully vaccinated. 58% are Pfizer, 39% Moderna, and 4% J&J. In addition, 93,315 have received an additional dose of Pfizer, and 46,893 have received an additional dose of Moderna.
Boosters are available for all Pfizer recipients who completed their initial two-shot course at least six months ago and who are ages 65 and over, individuals ages 18 and older who have underlying medical conditions which may make them more susceptible to the virus, or whose employment situation may also put them at higher risk, including first responders and healthcare workers, educators and daycare employees, correctional facility workers, those whose jobs are along our public transit system, food and agricultural workers including grocery store employees, manufacturing workers, and correction workers.
As a reminder, the Department of Health provides access to individuals' COVID vaccination records through NJ Docket, a secure and free smartphone app, which is CDC-approved.
Homebound residents who have not yet connected with their local health department, or a home health agency, and who need an in-home vaccination should visit www.covid19.nj.gov/homeboundvax or contact the call center at 855-568-0545.
To find a vaccine site visit www.covid19.nj.gov/vaccine.
Mental Health Resources
Recently the Department of Children and Families has seen an increase in the numbers of calls received by its Children’s System of Care hotline. These calls are covering a whole host of mental health issues and triggers, but unsurprisingly, many of these calls are coming early in the morning from parents concerned with the signs of stress their kids are exhibiting as they prepare for their school day.
They have put together a new page on their COVID information hub with a wealth of mental health support resources for youth, parents, and educators. This all can be found at that website, www.covid19.nj.gov/youthhelp.
Return and Earn Program
The New Jersey Department of Labor and Workforce Development is implementing the Return and Earn program. This new initiative will provide a $500 incentive for unemployed workers reentering the workforce and receiving job training from businesses with 100 or fewer employees and the positions filled pay at least $15 per hour.
Return and Earn is a two-track program with parallel rails. For employers, up to $10,000 in wage subsidies to help cover wages for new employees for up to their first six months on the job. For new employees, a direct $500 return to work benefit is provided in their first paycheck in addition to any other hiring bonus or benefit provided by their employer.
Return and Earn will reimburse employers for half of the wages paid for regular hours worked. The total reimbursement again will be capped at $10,000 per new employee and at $40,000 per employer. The reimbursement will be valid whether this training occurs in-person at the job site or virtually.
The $500 Return and Earn incentive and On-the-Job Training subsidy will be funded by $10 million in American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) funds. Additional related supportive services will be funded by Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA) funds.
Lori Buckelew, Assistant Executive Director, email@example.com, 609-695-3481, x112.