Mayor: Newark’s test positivity rate at ‘alarming’ 21%, twice the state rate

The test positivity rate in Newark is 21%, twice that of the state, Mayor Ras Baraka announced in a statement on Saturday.
It comes one day after advising a 10-day shutdown of the city beginning on Wednesday.
Mayor Baraka says the positivity rate in the East Ward is even more alarming at 41%.
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“We are urging all Newark residents and businesses to follow the guidelines and instructions for this holiday season,” the statement reads. “We cannot risk a continual spread of COVID-19 in our community. We cannot go back to where we were in April and May. But what we can do is urge everyone to be responsible, cautious, and think of the greater good. People’s lives depend on this.”
During a radio interview on Friday, Baraka outlined what the stay at home advisory would mean for Newark residents.
Mayor Baraka's WBGO interview, Nov. 19
“All stores that are nonessential and also this includes corner stores too. We are advising that everybody close down. Not just stores, but workplaces, barbershops, beauty parlors, gyms – everything shut down from Nov. 25 to Dec. 4,” Baraka said.
As News 12 has reported, the 10-day lockdown is not an order. It is yet to be determined if individuals and businesses will comply. But the mayor says that he believes that his pleas will be answered and that the city will make sacrifices to save lives.
“I think Newarkers are conscientious. They’ve done it before – slowed this thing down. And I think they will have the will and authority to do it again,” Baraka said.