Yesterday, Governor Jay Inslee issued a statewide Executive “Stay at Home Order”.
This order was put in place to protect the “whole community” of our State from the very contagious COVID-19 virus.
Anyone employed in essential services involving operation of critical infrastructure sectors and continuity of operations is allowed to continue to work.
Those persons who are not part of the essential services groups defined below should stay at home and only travel to grocery stores, doctor appointments, pharmacies and other locations offering essential services until the order is lifted.
People should continue to refrain from participating in any public gatherings and maintain social distancing of six feet or more throughout the duration of the order.
Law enforcement's primary role is to help educate people about how to comply with orders to stay at home. We are not being asked to detain, arrest, ticket or establish checkpoints for compliance. Rumors of strict law enforcement or "martial law" are not true.
Here are communication messages that may help you answer questions from your communities:
• We view our role more as one of education. Educating residents on how to keep themselves safe, how to keep their families safe and most importantly, to keep the rest of the community safe, especially our vulnerable populations.
• We understand some people need to carry out essential services such as:
1. Safety and security
2. Food, water, shelter
3. Health and medical
4. Energy (power and fuel)
For information on the definition of essential critical infrastructure workers please, go to:https://www.documentcloud.org/documents/6817901-FINAL-WA-Essential-Critical-Infrastructure.html
• Our communities have shown they understand the severity of the situation and are doing all they can already to keep themselves, their families and neighbors safe and healthy.
• When officers and deputies encounter people not complying with an order, we will remind them, as appropriate, of the recommendation and restrictions.
• No law enforcement agencies have any desire to make any arrests or take anybody to jail for violations.
• Rumors of individuals or businesses needing "passes" or "licenses" to conduct essential services are not true.
Rest assured we will continue to serve you every minute of every day and we will always enforce the laws that keep people safe.