Inslee extends stay-at-home order, business closures to May 4

Cornelia Mascio
Aprile 3, 2020

"If the governor had issued his executive order on conceal-carry permits a day earlier, I would have thought it was a bad April Fools' Day joke", House Minority Leader Crystal Quade, D-Springfield, said in a statement.

"We have yet to see the full weight of this virus in our state", Inslee said.

"We really are in the middle of a massive mobilization fueled by every sector of our state to save the communities we love", Inslee said.

Under the governor's order, people are required to stay home unless they are involved in an essential activity like shopping for groceries, going to a doctor's appointment, or working at an essential business.

For life to return to normal and the economy to be rebuilt, the governor said Washington must remain committed to social distancing, which means staying at least six feet apart from each other.

All gatherings, both private and public, are banned. These include things like playing pick-up basketball at the park, parties at the beach, and weddings.

He has said that the directive, which expires April 6, could be extended for 30 to 60 days. Nonessential businesses will also be closed through April and into the first week of May. Restaurants will be allowed to continue to serve takeout or delivery, mail will continue to be delivered and garbage and recycling will be picked up.

"We are having discussions about the next steps schools will take", Inslee said.

There have been 247 deaths and 5,984 cases of COVID-19 - the disease caused by the new coronavirus - in Washington as of March 31, the most recent data from the state Department of Health. Combined with last week's report that 3.3 million people sought unemployment aid two weeks ago, the USA economy has now suffered almost 10 million layoffs in just the past few weeks - far exceeding the figure for any corresponding period on record.

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