NJOA Calls On Governor To Open Sporting Good Stores, Vows To Continue Being “Social Distance Champions”
Trenton – Sportsmen coalition congratulates Governor on commitment to green spaces, asks administration to rethink bait, tackle, hunting shop shutdown strategy.
The New Jersey Outdoor Alliance on Thursday released a statement urging Governor Murphy and the State of New Jersey to support sportsmen and outdoor sports during the ongoing COVID-19 crisis.
The group, which represents the state’s 794,000 hunters, anglers and fishermen, called on the Governor to reopen the state’s many small, independently-owned sporting good shops with a set of commonsense social distancing and occupancy guidelines – similar to bike shops, hardware stores, and countless other businesses – so that sportsmen can get the gear needed to continue pursuing their sports and harvest spring game important to many sporting households’ family diets. Additionally, the NJOA applauded Governor Murphy and DEP Commissioner McCabe for honoring a commitment to keep state parks, forests and other natural areas open while taking commonsense precautions like closing nature centers and other points of congregation.
“We disagree on many policies, but now is the time to come together – and New Jersey’s sportsmen are on board with social distancing.” said NJOA spokesman Cody McLaughlin, “We as a group are uniquely situated to practice this important mitigation tactic, and a lake, river or hunting blind is a perfect place to do it. We’re committed to being ‘social distancing champions’. We urge the Governor to continue to support hunting and fishing and reopen small mom and pop tackle shops by appointment or with strict occupancy guidelines so that we can continue to enjoy these sports through this trying time.”
Facts about the New Jersey sportsman community:
- New Jersey boasts nearly 800,000 hunters, fishermen and trappers.
- Hunting, fishing and trapping account for nearly $1.26 billion in spending each year.
- New Jersey sportsmen support nearly 17,000 jobs within New Jersey.
- More than 70% of conservation funding in New Jersey is paid for by New Jersey sportsmen.
- Outdoor sports are a safe, fun activity that can alleviate the “cabin fever” of residents while still maintaining important social distancing guidelines put in place by officials.
About the New Jersey Outdoor Alliance: New Jersey Outdoor Alliance’s mission is “preservation through conservation.” NJOA serves as a grassroots coalition of outdoorsmen and outdoorswomen dedicated to the conservation of natural resources and environmental stewardship that champions the intrinsic value of fishing, hunting and trapping, among opinion leaders, policy makers, and the public at-large. To learn more about the organization, please visit: https://njoutdooralliance.org/.