Posted by NJWedding.com on 08/03/2020

NJ Restaurant & Venue Owners Propose New Safe Dining Plan

NJ Restaurant & Venue Owners Propose New Safe Dining Plan

TRENTON, NJ – Representatives from New Jersey’s largest venue and restaurant owners, and the NJ Restaurant & Hospitality Association (NJRHA) spoke out today about how the COVID-19 pandemic is shattering the state’s largest private-sector employer. The group presented a new safe dining plan with enhanced sanitation protocols, discussed the challenges of outdoor dining, fall predictions, and highlighted their Industry’s economic and community impact which will be presented through a 30-day #IServeJersey social media campaign.

“Sadly, current estimates suggest 30 percent of restaurants that make up the culture and personality of our state will close,” said Marilou Halvorsen, president of NJRHA, “Hit even harder, are our state’s largest wedding venues. Their complete closure has led to a ripple effect in the industry, where professionals like photographers, videographers, florists, and musicians, to name a few, are all out of work,” she added.

Late June, the governor indefinitely reversed the opening of indoor dining a few days before it was to happen. This surprising shift has resulted in heightened emotional and financial hardships for all, especially now that the midway point of summer has passed – this industry’s most robust time for partial economic recovery.

Meanwhile, the industry quickly responded and tightened their safe dining plan to include more enhanced sanitation efforts for less people with more social distancing, in hopes of cracking the door on reopening indoor dining and activities soon, to no avail.

Recently an uptick in COVID-19 cases, the highest since early June has been attributed by the governor as a result of indoor house parties and other unruly gatherings hosted by young people, where masks or social distancing were not adhered.

“We have the ability to control where people sit, what they touch, and how they mingle unlike indoor house parties or other unauthorized gatherings which seem to be on the rise as people hunger to socialize and celebrate,” said Halvorsen. “I’m confident we are not, nor will we become, the super spreaders of this virus, not with the knowledge and systems our industry has already put in place,” she added.

View link to NJRHA Virtual Press Conference 

To learn more about the safe dining plan or social media campaign, you can contact Shadeeshah Perry at (609) 599-3316 or sperry@njrha.org.


Established in 1942, the New Jersey Restaurant & Hospitality Association represents the Garden State’s 25,000 eating and drinking establishments—the state’s largest private sector employers, generating $14.2 billion in annual sales and employing over 318,000 people. Support, education, and advocacy for its members are part of the NJRHA’s recipe for success and why it has become an essential ingredient for the hospitality industry. Follow on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram: @NJRHAssociation. Or visit www.njrha.org for more info.

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