“Who’s Next? – The Dangers of the Zero-Sum Paradigm”
As most often defined (this example via Wikipedia): “Zero-sum thinking perceives situations as zero-sum games, where one person's gain would be another's loss. The term is derived from game theory. However, unlike the game theory concept, zero-sum thinking refers to a psychological construct—a person's subjective interpretation of a situation. Zero-sum thinking is captured by the saying ‘your gain is my loss’ (or conversely, ‘your loss is my gain’).”
Of all the factors that laid the foundation for the house that ultimately became “The United States of America,” “zero-sum” thinking has, unfortunately, significantly informed some of our national identity over the years. Perhaps this is not surprising, given that the economy of most of the colonies – and of much of the newly formed country in the years before the Civil War – was literally built on the backs of human beings held in bondage. We continue to see this notion of “if it’s theirs, it’s not mine” reflected in the factors that led to the murder of Asian-Americans in Atlanta a couple of weeks ago, an echo of the forced internment of Japanese-Americans during World War II. In a country so polarized, and with so many challenges already in play for many of the populations that human services traditionally advocates for, the game of “take from others to get what you need” is a divisive and destructive notion. Our year-long COVID-19 pandemic has been an example of this, whether it’s “who gets vaccines first,” or the arguments about achieving herd immunity by “sacrificing” some of the most medically compromised among us (heard during the pre-vaccine phase in 2020). I am suggesting that these beliefs are just plain wrong and yet there are many reasonably well-educated people who would argue the point. I’d argue further that competitive though it may be for us at times to navigate through the world, we are indeed “all in this together.” Why do we struggle so much with that idea?
This kind of thinking permeates so much of what we are all living through these days, with the lines of demarcation drawn between races, religions, political philosophies, ages, genders. Rooted in this idea of an expectation of a “winner and a loser,” we are pushed towards this false binary paradigm. Zero-sum thinking is even in play within groups that have been designated as threats to the group “on top.”
In her work entitled “Sister Outsider: Essays and Speeches,” Black feminist author Audre Lorde notes that “This kind of action is a prevalent error among oppressed peoples. It is based upon the false notion that there is only a limited and particular amount of freedom that must be divided up between us, with the largest and juiciest pieces of liberty going as spoils to the victor or the stronger. So instead of joining together to fight for more, we quarrel between ourselves for a larger slice of the one pie. Black women fight between ourselves over men, instead of pursuing and using who we are and our strengths for lasting change; Black women and men fight between ourselves over who has more of a right to freedom, instead of seeing each other's struggles as part of our own and vital to our common goals; Black and white women fight between ourselves over who is the more oppressed, instead of seeing those areas in which our causes are the same. (Of course, this last separation is worsened by the intransigent racism that white women too often fail to, or cannot, address in themselves.)”
While we might debate how we got to this point, I don’t think one can really argue how much the artificial dichotomy skews our problem solving abilities. Consider:
Men vs. Women; Black vs. White; White vs. Asian; Black vs. Asian; Jews vs. Gentiles; Old vs. Young; Agnostics vs. atheists; Sacred vs. Secular; Republicans vs. Democrats; Muslims vs. Christians; Wealthy vs. Working Poor; Sex vs. Abstinence; “Pro-Life” vs. Women’s Right to Self Determination; Abled vs. Disabled; Deaf vs. Hearing; Blind vs. Sighted; Animal Lover vs. Hunter; 2nd Amendment Defender vs. Assault Rifle Ban Supporter…and so many more. Is this really any different than the obviously absurd considerations of:
Up vs. Down; Light vs. Dark; Summer vs Winter; Purple vs. Yellow; Tomato vs. Onion; Sleep vs. Wakefulness; Music vs. Silence…and so on.
I’m not saying we can’t have likes and dislikes, or preferences for one thing over another. I am saying that the idea that liking something does not mean you must dislike something else. It is the very essence of both religious teaching and democratic process that our commonality as human beings far outweighs our differences.
When the news from Atlanta defined the shooter as a “troubled man with a sex addiction,” some chose to see this as clear evidence that the killing of a number of predominantly Asian women was “not a hate crime.” When the news from Boulder, Colorado came in just days later that a man with what appears to be a delusional psychotic illness had shot 10 people to death with an AR-15, many chose to focus on his illness as proof that his ability to purchase an assault rifle had nothing to do with what happened when he used it. This all gets mixed with “what about-ism” in which the easiest deflection is to turn the attention to something or someone else (think about the completely unproven “antifa” references as a defense to the January 6th insurrection in our nation’s capital).
Any loss is our loss; any injustice is an injustice to us all; as long as some of us suffer, we all feel the consequences of that pain and suffering. So let me ask the question again: why do we struggle so much with that idea?
I suspect we struggle because it is part of human nature to find an “enemy outside of ourselves,” and to try to make the world less nuanced, less complex, and more manageable for us to navigate (as in “we know what the rules are”). The difficult truth, however, is that it’s not an easy existence we live. It is filled with gray and intersecting points of agreement and those of conflict. We needn’t find a group to demonize. As Shakespeare wrote so long ago in Julius Caesar: “The fault, dear Brutus, lies not within the stars, but in ourselves. “
Best Practices in Juvenile Justice: Restorative Justice
By Gayle Kaufman, MA Senior Program Coordinator, Juvenile Institutional Services
In December 2019, the Annie E. Casey Foundation published a blog called From the Field: Four Ways to Transform Juvenile Justice Now, featuring video presentations that address four emerging areas of juvenile justice practice — youth partnership, credible messengers, restorative justice and healing youth trauma. The talks were recorded before a live audience at Casey’s 2019 Juvenile Detention Alternatives Initiative (JDAI®) Inter-Site Conference and will be presented as a series in our Human Services newsletter over the next few months.
The focus of the third part of our series is restorative justice. Honestly, this is one of my favorite topics to discuss with people just becoming familiar with juvenile justice issues because their response is invariable “that makes SO MUCH sense!” Restorative Justice is a healing process that holds juvenile offenders accountable for their wrong actions; provides support to fix or redirect whatever led them to commit the offense; and gives victims the opportunity to participate fully in the process in order to satisfy their desire for justice as well as restoration of harm. Through this approach, the consequences for delinquent behavior are delivered through teaching moments, not just punishment for punishment’s sake (which often misses the mark for adolescents, who don’t have the cognitive ability to connect the dots and learn valuable lessons that get down into the roots of their wrongdoing).
“Seema Gajwani captures the power of restorative justice — an approach that brings together offenders and their victims — to help youth take responsibility for their actions and forge connections based on compassion and empathy. Gajwani, special counsel for juvenile justice reform and chief of the restorative justice program in the Office of the Attorney General for the District of Columbia, reflects on how her first restorative justice circle upended her initial skepticism. “I was floored,” she said. “Two boys and their families came to resolution with accountability and fairness in an hour-and-a-half conversation.” Gajwani discusses research indicating that taking responsibility is fundamental to changing young people’s behavior. She also reviews restorative justice’s track record: Out of the 120 restorative justice cases that have come through her office, only seven have been returned for traditional prosecution. Her vision of a youth justice system ultimately abandons court as a default for all cases: “What if, instead, …we gave victims and offenders a chance to work things out together first?”
Underage Marijuana Use and Legal Consequences
Linda M. Porcaro Director, Office of Youth Services Somerset County
On February 22, 2021, Governor Phil Murphy signed the adult use cannabis reform bill into law, legalizing and regulating cannabis use and possession for adults 21 years and older. He also signed into law a bill clarifying marijuana and cannabis use and possession penalties for individuals younger than 21 years of age.
The law states the following for underage possession or consumption of an alcoholic beverage, marijuana, hashish or any cannabis item:
For the first violation, the police officer would give to the youth a written warning that would include the person’s name, address, and date of birth. In addition to the warning would be a sworn statement including a description of the relevant facts and circumstances that supported the officer’s determination that a violation occurred. This information is gathered for the sole purpose of being able to determine when a second offense happens. The initial passing of the law stated the parents are not notified of the offense. However, on March 26, 2021 the law (P.L.201,c.38) was amended to require, rather than prohibit, the officer to provide written notification of the violation to the individual’s parent or guardian if the individual is under the age of 18.
For the second violation, a written warning is again issued to the underage person indicating it is a second violation. The same information is gathered as was obtained for the first violation. For the individual who is 18 years or older, the officer will provide informational materials on accessing community services. For the person who is under 18 years of age, the written notification of the second warning with a copy of the original first warning will be given to the parent as well as the same informational material that is provided to the youth.
For the third or subsequent violation, the police officer will provide a write-up that indicates it is a third offense and the individual’s identifying information. The officer will provide notice of the written warning and referral to the community treatment services program regardless of the age of the individual. If the individual is under 18, the officer shall also provide the juvenile’s parents or guardian with written notification of the violation and the referral.
It should be noted that if the young adult, the youth and/or family do not accept assistance from an organization/agency, their actions shall not result in any summons, initiation of a complaint or other legal action to be adjudicated and enforced in any court.
As part of the process for writing up a warning, the officer is obligated to take possession of any alcoholic beverage, marijuana, hashish, or cannabis item and make note of what was confiscated in the sworn statement. Any and all paperwork concerning these offenses is to be destroyed on the second anniversary following the creation of the record concerning a violation and no later than the 21st birthday of the individual.
There will be a creation of the Taskforce Concerning Underage Possession or Consumption which will be established in the Department of Law and Public Safety. Comprised of 26 e-official members and members appointed by the Governor, the task force will review each Attorney General biannual report on underage violations and will make recommendations to the Governor and Legislature related to law enforcement activities to address the enforcement of underage possession or consumption.
To read the law in its entirety, access Senate No. 3454.
Somerset County 4-H
April 4 from 3pm-4pm, Open to the Public in Grades 1-4
Join Somerset County 4-H for our monthly online craft event where we’ll explore a variety of fun homemade activities. Focused on learning and engagement, Spring Crafts is perfect for giving youth a chance to socialize and be creative!
April 19 – May 10, Open to the Public in Grades 4-6
Put on your lab coats and get ready for some do-it-yourself science! Join Colgate Palmolive Scientists and IT specialists on Zoom where we’ll be exploring the wild world of hands-on STEM. In this fully interactive event, get ready to engage your brain with exciting experiments and creative activities.
Various Dates throughout April, Open to the Public in Grades K-3
Register for New Jersey 4-H home interactive webinars! During each webinar, youth will have the opportunity to engage, learn, and experience hands-on activities while learning about healthy living, science, technology, service, the arts, and more!
Various Events Throughout the Year
Register today to learn about animal care, behavior, training, breeding, showmanship, and more through three interactive sessions that you choose! Our experts will engage both youth and adults through live demonstrations, discussions, illustrated talks, and games.
Posting on Various Dates
Experience the outdoors or learn how to lead a healthier and active lifestyle through our catalogue of weekly blogs. Focused on 4-H and youth education, our well-written posts capture the heart of adventure, exploration, and leadership that youth can find in their own backyard and community.
Family & Community Health Sciences
April 15 starting at 6:30pm
Learn to freeze fresh vegetables and fruits and get tips for freezing other foods for later enjoyment.
April 22 starting at 6:30pm
Canning in a boiling water canner - This method is for fruits, tomatoes, jams/jellies and pickled products. Learn how to safely can food in glass jars.
April 28, 6:30pm-7:30pm
Join a team of FCHS professionals as they provide a short overview about quick and easy meals and then answer your questions live! Focused on ideas for planning, shopping, and prepping, this session allows guests looking for health advice to come and go within the hour.
April 29 starting at 6:30pm
This method is for vegetables (such as beets, carrots, corn, green beans); poultry, seafood and meat or foods that contain these ingredients. Learn how to safely can food in a pressure canner for later enjoyment.
Every Tuesday and Friday
Join FCHS this February as we cover a variety of delicious heart healthy recipes every Tuesday at 12pm and Friday at 11am on Facebook Live. With a focus on nutrition and wellness, these free classes are live and encourage engagement and questions.
Every Wednesday Afternoon
Covering a variety of topics related to food, nutrition, and healthy lifestyles - Wellness Wednesdays with FCHS brings the knowledge of experts from across New Jersey to provide free, online and educational webinars.
Available 24/7 on YouTube
Visit the FCHS YouTube channel ‘Somerset County Family & Community Health Sciences’ for an engaging mix of videos covering a wide variety of dishes, meals, cultures, and information. This is a great way to learn a new meal or explore your health and wellness at your own pace.
Available Upon Request
FCHS is able to provide free, online classes and lessons for community groups, schools, and early care sites. Our classes cover a variety of topics that involve nutrition, health, and wellness for all ages.
Agriculture and Natural Resources
Various Dates throughout April
This popular series has returned focusing on simple steps everyone can take to protect their environment. We can all do our part to take actions that make our homes more sustainable, from environmentally friendly lawn care, to recycling, to conducting a home energy audit. These actions, more than ever, start at home.
Various Dates throughout April & May
Get expert advice on effective gardening techniques from our extension experts who will cover a variety of topics for beginners and professionals alike with this new webinar series.
Trained Rutgers Master Gardeners of Somerset County are here to help you with your lawn and garden questions. Although offices are still closed to the public, we are accepting questions via our helpline email at: email@example.com.
Check out the Rutgers NJAES Home, Lawn, and Garden website for a variety of information including upcoming events covering topics like home landscaping, local wildlife, Fall gardening, and more. The page also has links to a bounty of great, free resources to take advantage of.
Using Technology to Socialize and Decrease Isolation
Andrew Rees MSW, Somerset County Office on Aging & Disability Services, Information Specialist
Caitlin Witucki MS, Somerset County Office on Aging & Disability Services, Deputy Director
Humans are inherently social creatures. The COVID-19 pandemic has reduced in-person socialization, which for some has negatively impacted their physical and mental well-being. Many are developing new, innovative ways of staying connected through the duration of extended stays at home.
“Positive social interaction may stimulate the release of stress-reducing hormones and decreases the feelings of depression,” said Petra Zdenkova, PsyD, a primary care psychologist at Samaritan Family Medicine - Geary Street in Albany. “It also improves cognitive function and boosts the immune system to help you ward off illness and live longer. Also, isolating yourself can lead to bad habits such as overeating, smoking or substance abuse, which can shorten your life expectancy.”
The following can be helpful ways to engage with others using modern technology:
While connecting virtually has its limits, seeing and interacting with others, even by computer screen, can make a positive difference. Social distancing does not have to mean social isolation, we can all connect safely online.
Some parts reprinted from online source Samaritan Human Health Service - October 12, 2020
The Food Bank Network of Somerset County
Every two years, the Somerset County Department of Human Services (DHS) completes a Needs Assessment required by the NJ Department of Children and Families (DCF). In the most recent 2020 assessment, the top basic need priority identified by participants was food insecurity. Some of the key barriers reported were lack of awareness, transportation, cultural barriers, stigma, services are one-size-fits-all, and eligibility requirements. To address these barriers, the Somerset County Department of Human Services has been working to raise awareness by informing various stakeholders including, both organizations and residents of the results.
This month we are highlighting The Food Bank Network of Somerset County. Incorporated in 1982, the mission of The Food Bank Network is “To distribute food and to provide other basic human needs to those less fortunate in our community in a manner recognizing and advancing self-worth and human dignity.” The organization works through food pantries located in Somerville, Bound Brook, North Plainfield, and a warehouse located in Bridgewater. Recently, The Food Bank Network relocated to a 9,860-square-foot-space at 7E Easy Street, Bridgewater, NJ 08805. Michael Goldberg, Food Bank Board Member-At-Large, explained the benefits the additional space has in allowing for more fresh and frozen foods. Mr. Goldberg revealed that the efforts have become a seven-day operation and expressed his gratitude for all of the volunteers, partnerships, and organizations who support the network.
The warehouse location offers a Client Choice Program which allows families to select items like a supermarket experience. The Food Bank Network operates a Backpack Program, serving over 600 children of various school districts of Somerset County weekly. Mr. Goldberg also explained that they are using new software called Food Pantry Helper, to better understand their clients and the need. The pantries operate on Saturdays, and the schedule is below.
The Food Bank Network is always looking to expand its volunteer network. “Whether it’s for an hour or half-day, once or on an ongoing basis, your help can make all the difference to many of your neighbors.” Call (732) 560-1813 to find the best volunteer opportunities for you or your group. The network relies on the generous donations of Somerset County’s business partners and residents who provide for all of the food. For more information, please visit their website https://www.somersetfoodbank.org/.
For a listing of food banks, pantries, and soup kitchens throughout the county please explore the following link Food Access
CENTRAL JERSEY HOUSING RESOURCE CENTER (CJHRC)
FREE VIRTUAL CERTIFICATE PROGRAMS
Virtual Post Purchase Webinar: May 11, 2021 6:00 pm to 8:00 pm
This webinar is all about making sure homeowners know about resources and information. Did you know there are rehab grants that be provided to cover things like central air, furnace or water heater as well as other things? If you are thinking about refinancing or a home equity loan (rates are very low right now) do you know what to consider? Do you keep up with regular maintenance such as replacing air filters or replace your fire extinguisher? Tips to avoid scams and protect your identity will be covered as well as homeowner’s insurance and why you should review your policy periodically and more. Homeowners can register for CJHRC’s FREE Post Purchase virtual webinar being held on May 11, 2021 by clicking this link https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/4517317548021488651. To receive a certificate for this webinar, please contact a CJHRC Counselor at 908-446-0036. Participants will need to complete and return some documents by May 18, 2021.
Virtual Homebuyer Webinar: June 15 and June 17, 2021 5:30 pm to 8:00 pm
Did you know that many times tenants paying high rents can buy and have a lower payment? Do you think the cost of housing in our area leaves you no options? Do you want to buy but do not know how to afford the down payment or closing costs? Enrolling in our “FREE” virtual certificate program will help you understand the purchasing process. Speakers are professional who will cover the following: Fair Housing, Money Management, Credit, Getting a Mortgage Loan, Homeowners Insurance, the Importance of retaining a Real Estate Attorney, Home Inspection & 10 Important Questions to Ask, Low/Moderate Income Program, grant opportunities and more. CJHRC is the only HUD certified housing counseling agency in Somerset County and all of our programs and services are FREE to clients. If you are interested, you must register for each day of the 2-day webinar. Please click each link and register.
June 15, 2021 https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/rt/5668928434773161483
June 17, 2021 https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/rt/490090129483120651
To receive a certificate for this webinar, which is valid for 1 year from date of issuance, please contact a CJHRC Counselor at 908-446-0036; participants will need to complete and return some documents by June 25, 2021.
CJHRC’s counseling services are FREE, and counselors can be reached at 908-446-0036 Monday – Friday from approximately 9-5. Please visit our website at www.cjhrc.org and click on the Housing Resource Center tab to view resources. Please follow us on FaceBook (Central Jersey Housing Resource Center) or Instagram (cjhrc_housing) where announcements about resources, services and tips are posted regularly.
Stress Awareness Month
How stressed are you right now?
Alexis Telyczka, Assisted Outpatient Treatment Services (AOTS) Department
In an average year, an individual person will experience fluctuating levels of stress from day to day, week to week, and month to month. A year into the coronavirus pandemic, many of us has been experiencing a notable increase in feelings of anxiety and stress. According to surveys led by the Kaiser Family Foundation, “During the pandemic, about 4 in 10 adults in the U.S. have reported symptoms of anxiety or depression, up from one in ten adults who reported these symptoms from January to June 2019.” Common issues that have come up for individuals during this time include feelings of isolation and loneliness, financial anxieties and instability due to job insecurity, and sudden changes in household schedules and expectations.
Chronic stress can cause serious issues for individuals. A stressed-out person might eat more or less, or take up excessive drinking or recreational drugs to cope. They might also find that they are unable to sleep well, or that they lack energy to partake in their usual daily activities. These issues could seem like they may only affect a person in the short-term, but compounded over time, they can exacerbate mental or physical ailments and make daily life that much harder on the individual.
As you read this, unclench your jaw. Roll your shoulders back. Take a moment or two, and just breathe. Think back to the last time you felt truly relaxed. What factors contributed to those feelings? For many of us, relaxation is purposeful, and is tied to specific events or rituals. Often, relaxation can seem time-consuming or expensive, and may not always seem to be worth engaging in, especially when one’s stress levels are already heightened. However, you don’t have to wait for a special event, a spa day, or a vacation to start recognizing what self-care looks and feels like for you, personally. Reducing stress and taking care of your mind and body begins at home.
What does stress feel like for you? Do your muscles tense? Do you feel a sudden urge to leave the stressful situation? In calm moments, make a plan for what you can do when you find yourself feeling stressed. You could start by becoming more aware of your tension, and being mindful of letting go of it. When you suspect you will be entering a stressful situation, what might you do before and/or after the situation to make yourself feel better and more relaxed?
Begin by simply recognizing what makes you feel more at peace. This can be as small as making yourself a cup of tea, opening your window for some fresh air, or closing your eyes and meditating for a couple of minutes. When you find yourself in a situation where your stress levels are rising, start to recognize it— and recognize that it is okay. Remember your coping strategies and begin to implement them when you are able to.
If you or a loved one are in need of mental health services please call the Richard Hall Health and Wellness Center Access Center at 908-253-3165.
If you are experiencing COVID-19 related stress please call our Somerset County Hope & Healing Program at 908-231-6414.
If you or a loved one is experiencing a psychiatric emergency please call Bridgeway Psychiatric Emergency Screening Service at 908-526-4100.
My name is Alba Robles I am very excited to begin this new chapter in my career with Somerset County as the new Human Services Coordinator. I am very passionate in helping others and advocating for improvement. I am currently completing my Master’s degree in Public Administration from Phoenix University where I have previously also obtained my Bachelor’s degree in Human services.
Prior to joining Somerset County I worked as a Case Manager at Coordinated Family Care in Middlesex County where I worked with youth and families providing care management services and connecting the families to community resources. Before relocating back to New Jersey, I resided in Texas where I worked for the Department of Family Protective Services as a Conservatorship Specialist where I was legally responsible for a child’s welfare when they are removed from their home and monitored the child’s care in their foster placement, working with biological parents, extended family and legal parties to find a permanent and safe place to live. I have also worked in health care settings where I assisted patients to get health care coverage and financial assistance.
Outside of work I enjoy spending time with my Husband, our two children and our furry child. We love to travel, eat and find fun family activities to enjoy together. I am very excited to be a part of the Somerset County team and being a part in helping address community needs.
“Life’s most persistent and urgent question is What are you doing for others?”
-Martin Luther King JR.
World Book Day was established by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) on April 23, 1995. This date is chosen because it is the anniversary of the death of William Shakespeare and prominent Spanish chronicler Inca Garcilaso de la Vega. According to the official World Book Day site, “World Book Day changes lives through a love of books and shared reading. Our mission is to promote reading for pleasure, offering every child and young person the opportunity to have a book of their own. Reading for pleasure is the single biggest indicator of a child’s future success – more than their family circumstances, their parents’ educational background or their income. World Book Day is marked in over 100 countries around the globe.” Some ways to celebrate World Book Day is to dress like a literary character, support local booksellers, or host a book club! In honor of this celebration, a few Somerset County Youth Council members are sharing their favorite book. We are also highlighting a nearby online bookstore.
Cindelle’s Bookstore is an online bookstore centered around, but not limited to, Black voices and Black novels and Black culture. As if online bookstores and mainstream book outlets are not enough, Cindelle’s Bookstore provides a platform for millennial authors and their books during a significant time for Black art and culture. Cindelle Harris, M.A., the owner of Cindelle’s bookstore, is an English teacher and a Composition professor who envisioned owning a bookstore in her community that will provide a space for community, knowledge, and unity amongst the local readers.
You can visit Cindelle’s Bookstore by following this link https://www.cindellesbookstore.com/
Two of our Somerset County Youth Council members Riley S. and Siri T. interviewed Cindelle Harris, to learn more about her motivation for opening her bookstore. To access the full interview transcript please click here
Cindelle Harris, M.A.
Riley S. & Siri T.
"The Beckonia Shadow by Katharyn Blair is about a young girl who is facing her troubling past, and suffering the consequences of running away from her family. It is a fantasy book, so it involves the main character having a power that she cannot control, and fighting others to protect herself and fix her mistakes." -Alexa D.
"I liked When Breath Becomes Air because it portrayed the lifestyle, hardships, and devastating realities that a surgeon has to endure daily, and it demonstrates the brevity of life and the bravery needed to confront the most difficult obstacle: death." -Sujay E.
"I enjoyed reading the book Love and Gelato by Jenna Evans Welch because of the authors vivid use of imagery, I felt as if I was on the adventure too." -Riley S.
| As part of the continued partnership with Zufall Health Center to bring one-dose J&J vaccines to our most vulnerable residents, Somerset County will maintain a waiting list of individuals that are eligible for Zufall’s next vaccination clinic. Anyone that is a member of an eligible group can call the Somerset County Health Department at 908-231-7155 from 8:30 am to 8 pm, Monday through Friday, and Saturday from 10:00 am to 4:00 pm to place themselves on this list. Callers should indicate that they would like to be placed on the Zufall waiting list. Eligible groups include anyone that:
Note that individuals are not calling this number to get an appointment to be vaccinated. They are placing themselves on a list to be contacted for an appointment when Zufall holds its next vaccination clinic for this population in Somerset County.