Governor Inslee Announces Expansion of Safe Start - Washington’s Phased Reopening
May 29, 2020 – On Friday, May 29, Governor Inslee announced that the Stay Home, Stay Healthy Order
will expire as planned, at midnight on May 31, 2020. Replacing the Stay Home Order, is an expanded Safe Start – Washington’s Phased Reopening
The newly expanded Safe Start gives counties more flexibility in demonstrating how they can safely allow additional activities based on metrics established by the Washington State Department of Health.
Beginning June 1, any county can apply to move to the next phase. The application process will involve meeting criteria established by DOH around five key areas: virus activity, healthcare system readiness, testing, contact tracing, and protecting vulnerable populations.
As part of the new criteria, the Governor announced that
the updated target for incidence of new COVID-19 cases reported during a two-week period is now less than 25 per 100,000 residents, where the prior goal was less 10 per 100,000 residents.
On May 27, King County released a key indicators data dashboard that provides a snapshot of useful indicators and metrics related to COVID-19 activity in the county. The dashboard provides data and trends for the numbers of reported cases; the growth, stabilization, or shrinking of the outbreak; testing capacity; healthcare system readiness; and more.
The Secretary of Health may approve a county moving in whole into the next phase or may only approve certain activities. Counties in Phase 1 that do not meet Phase 2 criteria may enter a "modified" Phase 1, allowing for certain Phase 2 activities.
King County Executive Dow Constantine announced a proposed plan to re-open limited activity
in the county, under the option to enter into a modified Phase 1. Pending state approval, King County is preparing to move forward to allow limited or modified openings for business sectors and activities including recreation and fitness, in-store retail, real estate, personal and professional services, and more.