What's open and closed

Washington's phased "Safe Start" approach to reopening

Visit our Safe Start page for more information about the governor’s phased reopening plan. That page also includes industry-specific guidance for safe reopening.


Gov. Jay Inslee’s Stay Home, Stay Healthy order requires Washingtonians to stay home as much as possible except for allowable activities. These include:

Essential activities, such as grocery shopping or medical appointments.

  • Going to work at an essential business or a business allowed to reopen under the Safe Start plan.
  • Picking up takeout food from a nearby restaurant.
  • Going outside for walks and exercise, as long as physical distancing of six feet is maintained. Recreate in areas close to home to avoid potential spread of COVID-19 outside your community.

In-person gatherings with people outside your immediate household are still prohibited. Physical distancing of at least six feet is required when outside the home. Use of a cloth face covering is strongly recommended.

If you believe a business is not operating in a way that complies with the governor’s Stay Home order or Safe Start guidance, you can submit an anonymous report.

What’s open

  • All essential businesses are open including grocery stores, pharmacies, gas stations and food producers.

  • Additional business and recreation activities are allowed under the various phases of the governor’s Safe Start reopening plan. The state is currently in Phase 1. Some counties have been approved to enter Phase 2.

    • Beginning May 5, the governor authorized partial reopening of certain recreational activities including golf and day use at state parks and public lands for fishing, hunting and other recreational purposes.

    • Beginning May 14, the governor authorized the following: outdoor, staffed tennis; guided tours and instruction for ATV, paddle sports, fishing and horseback; go-cart tracks, ORV/motocross and participant-only motorsports; and other substantially similar outdoor activities.

  • Employers, workers and the public are required to adhere to specific health and safety guidelines. For more information:

What’s prohibited

  • All gatherings of people for social, spiritual and recreational purposes are prohibited with the exception of drive-in spiritual services. This applies to both private and public gatherings which include everything from sleepovers for children to weddings. All of these types of events must be postponed for public health and safety.

  • Most businesses, except for those deemed essential or authorized under Phase 1 of the governor’s Safe Start reopening plan. Businesses that can operate using telework should continue to do so. For businesses where individuals cannot work from home, the Governor’s Office has provided guidance on what businesses are essential, building on the federal government’s and California’s definition of "essential critical infrastructure workers." You can clarify status, or request inclusion on the list. Businesses and entities that provide other essential services must implement rules that help facilitate social distancing of at least six feet.

  • Governor Inslee has issued several orders, including the Stay Home-Stay Healthy proclamation, prohibiting people from leaving their home or place of residence except to conduct or participate in essential activities, and/or business services. Suspected violations of the governor’s orders regarding essential business functions and social distancing can be reported

Read the full order on the Governor's Medium page.