Governor Jay Inslee released a statement on June 29 announcing the June 30 reopening for businesses and activities around Washington state.
“Because folks listened to science and stayed home to stay healthy, wore masks and got vaccinated, we can now safely fully reopen our state’s economy and cultural centers after 15 long months. It hasn’t been easy, but I’m proud of how Washingtonians came together, persevered and sacrificed to fight this virus, and now we’re finally in a place that is safe enough to end this chapter,” Inslee said in the statement.
Effective June 30, all industry sectors previously covered by guidance in the Healthy Washington – Roadmap to Recovery or the Safe Start Reopening Plan may return to usual capacity and operations, with limited exceptions for large indoor events. Large indoor events are considered any event with more than 10,000 simultaneous participants in an indoor, enclosed space.
According to the announcement, the following is some reopening guidance:
• Vaccine verification/negative testing is recommended but not required for large indoor and outdoor events.
• No capacity limitations or restrictions in restaurants, bars, stores, businesses, theaters, etc. except for large indoor events.
• Physical distancing is no longer required.
• Facial coverings are not required for vaccinated individuals unless required by individual businesses.
• Travelers are to follow CDC recommendations.
There will be some exceptions for places like schools and childcare centers that will continue to have some facial coverings and physical distancing requirements.
The Washington Department of Health (DOH) issued a press release early on June 30 about Inslee’s announcement of reopening.
“As Washington state reopens for business and recreation today, the Department of Health (DOH) is encouraging people to keep doing their part to stop the spread of COVID-19. Reopening does not mean the pandemic is over or that the risk of COVID-19 is gone,” according to the release.
The release also stated that most sectors can operate as they did in January 2020, as long as they follow workplace safety requirements from the Department of Labor & Industries. However, counties and businesses can have more protective requirements and DOH urges people to respect the rules of the room they’re in.