During a press conference Sunday (Nov. 15), Gov. Jay Inslee announced that beginning Monday at 11:59 p.m., new, broad restrictions would be put in place to mitigate the spread of COVID-19.
The announcement comes at the end of a two-week period during which case-rate records in Washington have been broken on an almost daily basis.
“This is in our hands,” Inslee said during the conference “We make a decision whether this pandemic is going to swallow us whole.”
The new restrictions will remain in place for the next four weeks, Inslee said. The mandates include a ban on indoor gatherings with people from outside your household (unless parties have either quarantined for 14 days before meeting or quarantined for a week and gotten a negative COVID-19 test result before meeting); dine-in service at restaurant and bars; indoor operations at gyms and other fitness facilities; and more.
Following Inslee’s address, Pierce County Executive Bruce Dammeier issued a statement regarding how the county would respond to the governor’s new mandates.
“I support the governor’s plan to roll back to more limited operations and activities across the state,” Dammeier wrote. “While I remain very concerned about the impact of this order on our already struggling small business and restaurants, I know that we cannot allow the rate of COVID-19 transmission to continue at its alarming pace. Without significant action, we risk overwhelming our hospitals and threatening our healthcare system.”
Dammeier said that he and other county officials will continue to develop support for small businesses and families who have been impacted by the pandemic. He noted that county operations will not be too detrimentally affected as county staffers have already transitioned to a mostly remote work environment.
Dammeier said that the recently launched Restaurant Rally campaign — which takes 30 percent off a diner’s restaurant bill from participating restaurants between Nov. 8 and Nov. 19 — will still continue.
At the end of his statement, Dammeier implored county residents to follow Inslee’s guidelines.
“I ask all county residents to comply with these orders so that we can more quickly move past this challenging time and rebuild our community,” Dammeier concluded.
To see the full list of new guidelines, click here.