New York, New Jersey and Connecticut are requiring mandatory 14-day quarantines for travelers coming into the region from states with high novel coronavirus (COVID-19) infection rates.
New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo, Connecticut Gov. Ned Lamont, and New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy held a joint press briefing on Wednesday, June 24 to announce the “travel advisory.”
“We’ve worked very hard to get the viral transmission down, and we don’t want to get it up,” Cuomo said. “People can literally bring the infection with them. ... It’s not malicious or malevolent, but it will be real.
Noting that the tri-state area is among the densest regions in the country, Murphy said that “the virus has taken us through hell and back, and the last thing we want to do is subject our folks to another round.”
“This virus is risky enough on its own with the potential to flare back up, so doing something like this is common sense,” he continued. “If you’re in a state with a high infection rate, do the right thing, which is a 14-day quarantine. It’s the responsible thing to do.”
Lamont added: “We’re not on an island. We’ve seen spikes and real community spread. If it was limited to the nursing homes or prisons, or something containable, perhaps we wouldn’t be as concerned,” he said. “We reluctantly came to the conclusion that this is what we have to do to make sure our region and states stay safe so we can get businesses and schools operating this fall.”
The travel advisory takes effect as of midnight on June 24.
Cuomo said that each state will be tasked with enforcing the 14-day quarantine mandate, and that violators will be subject to a judicial order, as well as fines of $2,000 for a first offense, $5,000 for a second offense, and $10,000 thereafter.
Residents in New York, Connecticut, or New Jersey who travel to states with a high infection rate will also be required to enter a 14-day quarantine.
“It could be the worst-case scenario … after we’ve gone through hell, imagine if we have to go back and do it again?” Cuomo questioned. “People have to do their part. (We) bent the curve. The news (has only) been good because we did what we had to do.”
States currently with an infection rate that will require a 14-day quarantine:
- North Carolina;
- South Carolina;
Cuomo said that the states will review the data each day, and that list could be updated daily.
“It’s common sense. It’s the spirit of community,” he said. “If you’re in a place with a high infection rate … we get that, and we’ll help you in any way we can, but we don’t want to see the infection rate go up here after what we’ve gone through.
“And that’s a 14-day quarantine.”
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