Washington Gov. Jay Inslee on Monday ordered non-essential businesses to close and the state’s more than 7 million residents to stay home unless necessary in order to slow the spread of COVID-19.
The stay-at-home order will remain in place through April 6. It expands previous actions taken by Inslee last week that ordered the statewide closure of bars, dine-in restaurants, and entertainment and recreation facilities and banned large gatherings. Several other states had already issued similar orders, including California and New York.
“This is a human tragedy on a scale we cannot yet project. It’s time to hunker down in order to win this fight,” Inslee said during a televised address.
All businesses other than those deemed essential — a long list that includes grocery stores, pharmacies, banks, and gas stations — will need to close by Wednesday night.