South Brunswick Mayor Charles Carley released the following statement to residents on April 5:
“I wanted to take a few moments to let you know what has been going on in our town over the past week, and where we stand at this moment.
“To date, we have 54 total confirmed cases of COVID-19 within South Brunswick. This represents a significant increase over the course of a week, but these numbers are not unexpected. We know that this virus is spreading, and so an increase in cases was inevitable, but an increase in the number of people tested also means an increase in positive test results.
“I’d like to assure you that as a township, we are doing everything possible to stem the increase of cases among our residents. Our Office of Emergency Management has been operating continuously since the virus began to affect our community, and will remain operational until the threat has passed. Our staff has been in constant contact with our partners at the county and state level, and we have had regular video conferences with our township rescue squads and fire departments, to be sure that we are all doing everything needed to combat this threat, and that, as first responders, we are staffed, equipped and trained to meet the needs of our township, as well as support our members.
“We as a community, you, your families, your neighbors, are holding the line – washing hands often and properly, keeping social distances, covering coughs and sneezes even in our homes, cleaning surfaces, and staying home as much as we can. Right now, due to your diligence, our town’s results are promising. But this is early in the challenge and it is reasonable to expect that the news will get worse before it gets better. We must remain vigilant over these next few weeks in an ever-changing environment.
“During this pandemic, we have observed an amazing feeling of community within our township. Again, this is not unexpected, as we know that our residents are incredibly kind, compassionate, and helpful, but to see our residents come together as a community, supporting each other through this difficult time, is truly heartwarming, and I couldn’t be prouder of you all. The enormous, and much needed, support for the food pantry was nothing short of heroic, and the support witnessed for our front line professionals working in health care and emergency services means the world to them.
“During the coming week, we may find it difficult to maintain social distancing. Holidays which normally draw us together as families must see us celebrate apart, a necessary precaution to take to thwart the spread of the virus. Please know that these actions are helping flatten the curve. Although we have to keep our physical distance, it has never been more important to maintain a connection to those closest to us in order to care for our own mental well-being and that of our family and friends, too. Remember that you’re not alone in this, and by reaching out to others by video chat or phone call, we are reminded that we are all in this together.
“Since last week, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has issued guidance on face masks: The CDC advises you to cover your mouth and nose with a cloth face cover when around others, as you could spread COVID-19 to others even if you do not feel sick. Everyone should wear a cloth face cover when they have to go out in public, for example to the grocery store or to pick up other necessities. Cloth face coverings should not be placed on young children under age 2, anyone who has trouble breathing, or is unconscious, incapacitated or otherwise unable to remove the mask without assistance. The cloth face cover is meant to protect other people in case you are infected. Do not use a face mask meant for a healthcare worker. Continue to keep about 6 feet between yourself and others. The cloth face cover is not a substitute for social distancing. For complete guidance from the CDC, visit www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/prevent-getting-sick/prevention.html
“I have confidence that if all do their part, and if the best arrangements are made, as they have previously been, and continue to be by our emergency service personnel, township and county government, then we will meet the challenge. We have the advantages of being hale, well-educated, and aware to the consequences of this disease. Stay informed – sign up for our Nixle feed, check www.sbtnj.net for daily briefings, and refer to www.middlesexcountynj.gov for regional information.
“My best advice and deepest wishes: that we continue to be very concerned but never panic, and that we each continue to do our part.”