Governor Inslee reissues statewide indoor mask mandate for all public spaces effective Monday, Aug. 23
**Update: Gov. Jay Inslee, on Friday, August 20, updated and extended two emergency proclamations that expand the vaccine requirement and the statewide face-covering requirement. The expanded emergency orders are Proclamations 20-25, Washington Ready, and Vaccination Requirement 21-14.
- Proclamation 20-25was amended to adopt the most recent face-covering order issued by the Secretary of Health, Order 20-03.4. Under this order, every person in Washington must wear a face covering when they are in a place that is generally accessible to any person from outside their household, subject to specific exceptions and exemptions. Effective Monday, August 23,
- Proclamation 21-14 (Vaccination Requirement)was expanded to include all employees, on-site contractors, and on-site volunteers at all public and private K-12 schools, public and private 2- and 4-year institutions of higher education, and early learning and child care programs serving children from multiple households. Effective immediately.
In a press conference on Wednesday, August 18, Governor Inslee announced that he is reissuing the statewide indoor mask mandate for all public spaces effective today Monday, August 23.
The indoor mask mandate applies to all individuals and children over five years of age regardless of vaccination status. All public spaces across the state, including retail stores, malls, restaurants, grocery stores, and public-facing offices, are affected. The limited exemptions to this mandate include office spaces not easily accessible to the public where individuals are vaccinated and when working alone indoors or in a vehicle with no public face-to-face interaction. Small, private indoor gatherings where all attendees are vaccinated are also exempt.
Every county in the state currently falls within the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) substantial or high transmission. Each of the state’s 35 local health officers recently recommended all individuals wear masks indoors.
In addition, the Governor also announced a vaccination requirement for employees working in K-12, most childcare and early learning, and higher education settings. K -12 educators, school staff, coaches, bus drivers, school volunteers, and others working in school facilities will have until October 18 to be fully vaccinated as a condition of employment. The requirement includes public, private, and charter schools. This comes as schools across the state prepare to return for the 2021–2022 school year amid rapidly increasing case and hospitalization numbers. This does not impact students, regardless of age.
See link to full conference recorded on Wednesday, August 18 at 2:30pm/PT on TVW
See our website for this and other downloadable graphics related to COVID-19 reopening signage here.