April 16, 2020


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There is a new City website which gives Newark residents all the information they need about the COVID-19 crisis and spells out Mayor Ras J. Baraka’s many programs to help them get through it.

The new website is a one-stop shopping portal organized by topic and links to city, state and federal programs to which Newark residents can apply.  When new programs are launched or changed or additional COVID-19 information becomes available, the site will be updated in real time.

It also reminds residents of Mayor Baraka’s daily COVID-19 briefing each day at 5 p.m. on Facebook live, found on the City Hall Facebook page.

On the introductory page of the website Mayor Ras J. Baraka has written an explanation of why he wanted all the COVID-19 information in one, easy-to-find, easy-to-use place.

“The City of Newark is investing more than $6 million in a growing list of initiatives to keep Newark’s most impacted residents safe, healthy and financially secure,” the Mayor wrote. “Together with thousands of volunteers, we are collaborating with state and federal governments, philanthropies and non-profits, businesses and faith-based organizations to weather this health emergency and continue to thrive once we are on the other side of it.”

Staci Berger, the CEO and president of the Housing & Community Development Network of New Jersey called City’s website “comprehensive” and a “breath of fresh air.”

"Many resources are available for residents who are being impacted by the coronavirus pandemic, but it can be tough to navigate through everything,” she said. “The City of Newark's resource website is comprehensive and easy to use, which is a breath of fresh air during this health crisis. The website is another example of Mayor Baraka’s leadership and the important work being done by his Administration to serve the people of the great City of Newark."

There are four sections on the homepage of the site, plus a link to state and federal information.

The “Stay Safe. Stay Alive” section links to Mayor Baraka’s “Stay at Home Orders” and “Be Still Mondays” initiative. There is also information on how to get tested for the coronavirus, which connects to the state’s COVID-19 site. A fourth link goes to all recent press releases and Newark News stories, many of which deal with COVID-19 issues.

The “Small Business” section links to Mayor Baraka’s programs for small business emergency grants, help for commercial tenants and property owners, and funds for artists and arts organizations. A link to INVEST NEWARK also will help business owners navigate COVID-19 programs available to them. There is also a link for employers seeking “essential workers” to find them through the City’s Emergency Response Staffing Unit.

The “Housing Section” links to Mayor Baraka’s programs aimed to help homeowners, renters, Housing Authority tenants and the homeless. These include forgivable loans for homeowners and first-time buyers, mortgage relief and the tenant eviction moratorium, and safe housing for the homeless.

Finally, the “Employment & Wellness” section includes health department information, including phone numbers and hours of services, including the WIC program, Immunization Clinic and Social Services. There is a link to food distribution and school lunches, and employment opportunities as well as unemployment services.

- Newark News