NJPD Calls for Democratic Candidates to Sign CoVid-19 Campaign Safety Pledge

In light of the ongoing CoVid-19 pandemic and the increased risks to peoples’ health and safety during this primary election season, New Jersey Progressive Democrats of Union County (NJPD-UC) is calling for the suspension of all campaign activities that might further endanger the public. This includes the use of all political mailers, literature drops, and door-to-door canvassing.

After Governor Murphy’s Executive Order mandating a statewide stay at home order and numerous calls for everyone to help flatten the curve, we must ensure we are doing our part. Even one candidate or campaign volunteer going door-to-door to interact with people violates the state mandated call for social distancing and exposes both them and the voter they are interacting with to an increased chance of infection. Some studies have shown the virus can survive on surfaces between one and three days. This includes paper, cardboard, and plastics. Delivering campaign literature and sending glossy mailers to residences can potentially expose our friends, family, and neighbors to contaminated stationary that is being sent directly into their homes. These are not risks any candidate, politician, or community leader should be willing to take. These are not risks we are willing to take.

In the absence of traditional campaigning, we have an opportunity not only to ensure the public health, but to be more transparent with voters than ever before. Through online forums and virtual town halls, our candidates will commit to an even higher level of communication that is done in the safest way possible.

NJPD-UC is calling on the Regular Democratic Organization of Union County, the Union County Democratic Committee, all municipal Democratic Committee Chairs, all coordinated and uncoordinated PACs and CPCs, and all candidates running in the 2020 Democratic Primary in Union County to take this pledge. This is not the time for politics as usual. This is the time to stand together and serve the people. We must choose to put public health above personal ambition.

NJPD-UC has begun circulating a petition calling on all candidates in the Union County Democratic Primary to put public safety first and suspend the use of mailers, literature drops, and in person canvasing. Over 100 signatures have been obtained, and signatures are coming in by the minute. The public is asking us to keep them safe, and we should represent their wishes and respect their safety; that’s called leadership.

To sign the petition please go to: http://bit.ly/CoVidPetition

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Press Contact
Jason Krychiw, Interm Chairperson
E: jason@njprogressives.com


Petition Text

WHEREAS, the World Health Organization (WHO) has declared CoVid-19 a global pandemic. [1] [2]
WHEREAS, the United State Centers for Disease Control have made the following recommendations and advisories to protect public health, (1) “put distance between yourself and other people,” (2) “stay home as much as possible,” (3) “clean and disinfect frequently touched [things],” (4) “you could spread CoVid-19 to others even if you do not feel sick.” [3]
WHEREAS, New Jersey’s Governor, Phil Murphy, through Executive Order has mandated social distancing to “flatten the curve” of CoVid-19. This includes a state-wide stay at home order. [4]
WHEREAS, a New England Journal of Medicine article states that CoVid-19 can live on paper and plastic (including plastic coated paper) for 24 to 72 hours. [5] [6]
WHEREAS, traditional campaign activities that put people in contact with voters and transfer paper or other materials from one person to another could introduce potentially contaminated materials into people’s homes and put the public at a greater risk for the transmission of the CoVid-19 virus. It is antithetical to the public health for campaigns to put people at unnecessary risk. Alternative means (e.g. online and virtual) should be adopted by all campaigns.

NOW THEREFORE, I, _______________________________________, demand that the Regular Democratic Organization of Union County (RDO), Union County Democratic Committee (UCDC) Chaired by New Jersey State Senator Nicholas Scutari (LD-22), all coordinated and uncoordinated PAC’s & CPC’s, and all candidates running in the 2020 Union County Democratic Primary on non-establishment controlled lines put public health first and suspend all campaign activities that could put the public at risk for contracting CoVid-19. Activities that could put the public at risk include sending direct mail to voters (CoVid-19 can live on paper and other surfaces for up to three days), sending people to drop literature at voters’ homes or businesses and sending people to speak to voters in person (CoVid-19 can easily spread from person to person and sending people to voters’ homes violates mandates from Governor Murphy for social distancing), among others. I call on all campaigns to sign the attached “CoVid-19 2020 Campaign Public Safety Pledge” and only use campaigning methods that put public safety, the voters, and all residents of Union County first.

[1] World Health Organization. (11-Mar-2020). WHO Director-General’s opening remarks at the media briefing on CoVid-19. Retrieved from: https://www.who.int/dg/speeches/detail/who-director-general-s-opening-remarks-at-the-mediabriefing-on-covid-19---11-march-2020
[2] Cucinotta, D. & Vanelli, M. (19-Mar-2020). WHO declares CoVid-19 a pandemic. PubMed. DOI: 10.23750/abm.v91i1.9397
[3] United States Centers for Disease Control. CoVid-19 Frequently Asked Questions. Retrieved from: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/faq.html
[4] State of New Jersey. (21-Mar-2020). Governor Murphy Announces Statewide Stay at Home Order, Closure of All Non-Essential Retail Businesses. Retrieved from: https://www.nj.gov/governor/news/news/562020/20200320j.shtml
[5] Doremalen, N. (17-Mar-2020). Aerosol and surface stability of SARS-CoV-2 [CoVid-19] as compared with SARS-CoV-1. Boston MA: Massachusetts Medical Society. DOI: 10.1056/NEJMc2004973. Retrieved from: https://www.nejm.org/doi/full/10.1056/NEJMc2004973
[6] Aubrey, A. (14-Mar-2020) The new coronavirus can live on surfaces for 2-3 days – here’s how to clean them. NPR. Retrieved from: https://www.npr.org/sections/health-shots/2020/03/14/811609026/the-new-coronavirus-can-live-onsurfaces-for-2-3-days-heres-how-to-clean-them

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