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OLYMPIA – This morning, the Thurston County Public Health and Social Services Director, Schelli Slaughter, received notification from John Wiesman, Secretary of the State Department of Health, that Thurston County’s application for a variance to move to Phase 2 of the Safe Start Recovery Plan was approved. This approval is effective immediately.

Thurston County Commission Chair John Hutchings said, “Thank you so much to our staff and local hospitals for working hard to make sure the application we submitted was complete and ready for approval. We are excited to start opening Thurston County back up and get the local economy moving forward.”

Hutchings added, “Our obligations and responsibilities continue as we move into Phase 2. It’s imperative to keep our momentum going by masking up, respecting social distancing, and maintaining grouping maximums. We do not want to go backwards!”

Phase Two of the Safe Start Recovery Plan includes limited openings and capacity restrictions for certain industries such as construction, real estate, retail, restaurants, personal fitness training, salons, pet grooming, and other categories of service. It also allows for gatherings of up to five people outside a family group each week.

 

Residents of Thurston County should continue to social distance and to wear cloth face coverings when out in public where social distancing is not possible. In addition, residents are asked to ‘stay local’ and not travel far from home to participate in Phase 1 or Phase 2 recreation or business. High risk populations should continue to stay home and stay healthy.  It also remains important to stay home if you’re sick, and to call your health care provider to see if you should be tested for COVID-19. Washing hands, and covering coughs are also important for continued protection.

For the most up-to-date information for the Thurston County COVID-19 response and recovery, visit: https://www.thurstoncountywa.gov/phss/Pages/coronavirus.aspx

For more details about guidance for businesses or to learn more about what is permitted in Phase 2, please visit Governor Inslee’s website: https://www.governor.wa.gov/issues/issues/covid-19-resources/covid-19-reopening-guidance-businesses-and-workers?fbclid=IwAR0rDXWPewt4aSkU33T-9CkddV-Y_oymUfJXGY12GCL0sPf00K2NpnJXofc

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