To our neighbors with the lawn sign “Unmask our kids”:
I applaud your courage in putting a controversial message up on your front yard. However, I regret your message.
We all want our kids to go back to the classroom, but we’re still in the middle of a pandemic. If we are hoping to keep our teachers and children safe, wearing masks is a low-tech tool that accomplishes just that.
We all wish that the pandemic would be over and that it would no longer be necessary to wear masks. But that’s not the reality.
In Florida, on August 18, one week after the start of the school year, the Hillsborough County Public School district reported over 1,800 cases of COVID-19 among students and staff, and 10,000 students and staff were isolated or quarantined. In this school district of Florida with more than 213,000 students, masks are required for the children, but parents can opt out, and over 28,000 parents have done so.
Let’s be smarter than Florida. Let the kids wear their masks and go back to the classroom!
Jill Harris, summit
Expansion of the compulsory vaccination in nursing homes
After hearing the news of a government vaccination mandate for nursing homes, I felt compelled to send this letter.
President Joe Biden announced that the facilities could lose their Medicaid / Medicaid funding if employees do not receive COVID-19 vaccinations. I am a nurse currently employed in a nursing home in New Jersey. I am vaccinated and I absolutely agree to this order.
However, I would like to answer the following question: why are patients and visitors in these nursing homes not subject to the same mandate? Our safety as employees also counts.
If a visitor can bring the coronavirus to an unvaccinated resident, I can then infect him with that resident. Why is that ok? Someone has to take care of the safety of healthcare workers.
Donna Mount, Great Meadows
Reduce incentives to prescribe opioid pain relievers
Last week Spencer Kent wrote a thought-provoking article (“The Lost Generation”) about the New Jersey opioid crisis. The play describes the tragic death of two young men who became addicted to heroin after being prescribed opioids after a medical procedure – part of the “lost generation” of young people lost to addiction.
3.75 million patients start long-term opioid use every year after surgery. Unfortunately, opioids are the standard in post-operative pain management – and they lead ignorant New Jersey residents down a dangerous path that many will never return from.
There are alternatives, however. Non-opioid treatments provide safe and effective pain management and can produce better clinical outcomes. Even so, many hospitals do not offer the option of non-opioid treatment because federal reimbursements are too low for alternatives such as relaxation therapy, chiropractic care, and non-opioid medicine.
Fortunately, this issue has caught the attention of federal legislators. The Non-Opioides Prevent Addiction in the Nation (NOPAIN) Act, reintroduced in Congress this spring, aims to make it easier for patients and providers to access effective non-opioid pain management options.
These treatments can stop opioid addiction before it starts. I call on Congress and US sensors Cory Booker and Bob Menendez, both DN.J., to support the NOPAIN Act (S-586). The health of New Jersey and the entire United States depends on it.
Denise Mariano, Roxbury
Note: The author is the director of Family Support and Advocacy for Partnership to End Addiction.
Reduce the price of prescription drugs
The price of prescription drugs is unbearable and could even bankrupt millionaires. The pricing structure has gotten out of hand and is getting worse and worse, making life-saving drugs unavailable to so many people. This is “cruel and unusual” based on the standards of other wealthy nations.
Alphonso Johnson, Newark
How can I have my house taxed like Fulop’s?
I have comments on your recent article: “(Jersey City Mayor Steve) Fulop is buying a new house on the same block as the old one – for $ 2.4 million.”
The article states that the property tax on this home in 2020 was $ 17,497. A previous owner, former New York Giants offensive guard Justin Pugh, reportedly rented the house for $ 11,000 a month.
I got the impression that Jersey City recently (2018) underwent a revaluation of residential property values for property tax purposes. My annual taxes on my more humble home in Clark Township, Union County are about $ 14,000.
Based on Fulop’s $ 2.4 million home tax, I estimate that if my house were in Jersey City, my annual taxes would be about $ 3,500.
Am i missing something? How much government aid goes to Jersey City compared to Clark and other small communities in New Jersey?
Bob Barrett, Clark
Our journalism needs your support. Please subscribe to NJ.com today.
The Star-Ledger / NJ.com encourages comment. Bookmark to NJ.com/meaning. Follow us on Twitter @NJ_Opinion and on Facebook at NJ.com Opinion. Get the latest news straight to your inbox. Subscribe to the NJ.com newsletter.