Washington Gov. Jay Inslee (D) on Sunday announced broad new restrictions that will affect restaurants, theaters, gyms and indoor gatherings.
The new restrictions will last for at least four weeks. Restaurants will be allowed to operate only outdoor service, and parties will be limited to five or fewer people. Gyms, theaters and museums will be shut down, The Seattle Times reported.
Gatherings with people outside a single household will be prohibited unless those involved have quarantined for a week and tested negative for the coronavirus. Religious services and offices will be allowed to remain open, though they must operate at 25 percent capacity. If possible, workplaces should mandate that employees work from home.
Schools and courts will not be affected, though the newspaper noted that they are already operating remotely for the most part. The new guidelines do not apply to child care, and construction and manufacturing will be allowed to continue operating.
“Today, Sunday, November 15, 2020, is the most dangerous public health day in the last 100 years of our state’s history,” Inslee said. “A pandemic is raging in our state. Left unchecked, it will assuredly result in grossly overburdened hospitals and morgues; and keep people from obtaining routine but necessary medical treatment for non-COVID conditions.”