South Paterson store entrances, surfaces being disinfected ahead of Ramadan | Paterson Times

South Paterson store entrances, surfaces being disinfected ahead of Ramadan


Two men in hazmat suits began spraying a disinfecting solution on store door handles, parking meters, and benches in South Paterson on Wednesday morning.

It’s part of an effort by the Palestinian American Community Center and councilman Al Abdelaziz to clean up and disinfect all touchable surfaces on Main Street from Crooks to Madison Avenue ahead of the holy month of Ramadan, when Muslims fast from dawn until dusk.

“We feel it’s one of the least things we could do,” said Diab Mustafa of the Palestinian American Community Center (PACC) which has an office on Lakeview Avenue and was founded in 2014. “In these times, everybody needs to step up their game and give back. We believe very strongly in giving back to the community.”

Mustafa is giving out signs to businesses to ensure customers come in with masks and gloves. “Stop! Covid-19. No mask. No service,” reads one sign. “Stop! Covid-19. No mask. No gloves. No service,” reads another.

Stores and restaurants have started to display the signs at their entrances.

Mustafa’s group is giving surgical masks to stores to give to their customers, who try to come in without masks and gloves. Those customers will need to don masks and gloves before entering the businesses.

“It’s also an education piece, getting the word out to businesses and people that are out there,” said Abdelaziz. “The key thing here is to educate.”

Mustafa said a large banner will be unfurled overhead at the Crooks-Main intersection thanking people for wearing masks and wishing them Ramadan Mubarak — blessed or happy Ramadan.

The timing of the disinfecting and education campaign coincides with the Muslim fasting month which starts this week. Paterson has one of the largest Muslim populations in the U.S. Restaurants and bakeries in South Paterson see a big increase in customers just before it’s time to break fast at sunset.

“This is usually their busy season,” said Abdelaziz of businesses in South Paterson. “The businesses have assured me they’ll be practicing social distancing.”

“We know it’s hard this year,” said Mustafa. “Mosques are closed.”

The heavily attended nightly congregational prayers at mosques across the city have been cancelled because of the new coronavirus pandemic.

Abdelaziz said the annual lantern lighting, called the Fanoos, will take place, but without fanfare. Over the past years, hundreds of people typically attended the lantern lighting.

“It’s going to be lit, but there’s not going to be a ceremony,” said Abdelaziz. “We’re not going to let this virus dampen our religious spirits.”

Abdelaziz, who represents the 6th Ward, where South Paterson is located, said he is planning something similar for the business corridor in the People’s Park section.

The crew of 16 people began disinfecting and picking up trash from the streets at the corner of Main and Crooks and will continue to Madison Avenue, said Mustafa.

Wassim Kanaan, who volunteered for the effort, said the community is doing its part by cleaning and disinfecting the business corridor.

“There’s little bit of a fear,” said Kanaan. “We have to be careful and we have to be a conscious.”

Disinfecting South Paterson

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  • John

    Why would Muslim politicians only do this in Muslim areas? We non Muslims don't matter? How racist

    • I love Paterson.

      You’re such a race mongering turd. Take the good news story and move on you buffoon.

      • Paterson Pulse Paterson Pulse

        Some people will evidently not want Christians to point out the truth, especially this kind for response, this kind of Anti-Christian Bigotry.

        • I love Paterson.

          I can’t wait to see you clean the streets of Paterson this week. Wear a mask and bring gloves!

          • http://www.facebook.com/animalabusewar Animal Abuse War

            If you are in my area, I heard you mention front st, and ever want to help, please reach out I am about to clean a strip of Paterson Ave, next week. If you don't want to clean but enjoy checking in on seniors, or other tasks, let me know as I am overwhelmed doing too much by myself.
            [email protected]

    • http://www.facebook.com/animalabusewar Animal Abuse War

      Get your lazy ass up and do it where you live instead of bitching and pointing fingers at others who are actually doing something. Go to them and offer to help them if they help you. It's about humanity, and if we don't all help each other stop this division,we will all be in great trouble. It has to be all of us against them the evil ones. The common Muslim is not "the evil one".If you can't figure it out,you have issues.

  • John

    Have your Muslims volunteer in non Muslim areas. Show that you can be unlike the Muslim norm of never helping non Muslims

    • Paterson Pulse Paterson Pulse

      Glad you brought that up, this has been happening a long them now, and they will attack you for pointing out the enviable.
      I just received a call for the favors going on in South Paterson and they have done nothing to give food or help Paterson as a whole.
      But you're not the only one thinking this and soon other will join in a discussion concerning this.

  • Paterson Pulse Paterson Pulse

    Very disturbing that they pretend to care about Paterson as a whole and get Christians votes, especially from the Latino Christins but all the resources go to the Muslim community.
    Straight Out Of The Middle East. It's time for Christians to open up their lazy eyes and take this issues on.
    Paterson is for everyone, not a particular race or religion.

    • I love Paterson.

      Paterson is for everyone. Enough with your hack journalism and pretend care for Paterson. Id love to see you on front street picking up trash. I’m Christian and love my South Paterson brothers for their care. I saw hand and hand everyone working for their fellow brother of all faiths. Unlike you with your “Paterson (No) Pulse articles” get a life my guy. God help you.

    • http://www.facebook.com/animalabusewar Animal Abuse War

      The question is, where are all those claiming to be Christians? Why aren't they doing the same as the muslims??? I am a Christian.i feed street cats, get them spayed, and take care of neglected dogs in the Wayne Ave area. Everywhere I feed, I pick up garbage, i have yet to run into another Christian doing anything here. I look in on the seniors, disabled, mentally ill,take out their garbage,run to the store for them,bring kids toys and clothes. Try to educate others about God and the Constitution. On Preakness,front, walnut, maple, liberty, Wayne totowa Ave- I don't see anyone else even come out to help. One of the places I feed is across from a Muslim store.They always come out to thank me.a few times,one of the men helped moving the bags full of garbage. So where are the Christians, watching me from their windows, yelling at me it's not my job and screaming not to feed the very cats that were the reason I met who I met to help. This country is a disaster. True Christians would know the truth of what's going on. To fight the evil,we must all join together as humans, no matter what labels we put on ourselves. Creating division according to religion, color, e.t.c, is exactly how, divided we will fall. When everyone wakes up one morning, into communism right here in America, don't ask yourself how could this have happened. Stop hating and killing each other, turn off the tv. Wake the hell up to what's really going on here and fight like hell to keep this country free.

  • Emmy gomez

    i applaud them for doing this! at least they are doing something right! they are not obligated to take care of the WHOLE Paterson that is the Mayor's JOB! All of the people in Paterson need to come together and join this kind of wave of helping each other as a whole. Covid is a virus but it is also a PEOPLE problem. its the PEOPLE of Paterson who need to get up and social distance and take ACTION in cleaning the city and asking the city better. Paterson was once a beautiful place and it can be that again if the PEOPLE as a WHOLE would come together as one. The fact that at least south patersonians are doing this is still helping because it will atleast reduce the spread in this part of paterson. I think the mayor should enforce this upon the general public of patersonians . #Igrewupinpaterson