TACOMA, Wash. — COVID-19 has surged exponentially, threatening the health of our loved ones, our children’s ability to attend classes in person, and our economic trajectory. On Thursday, we heard Gov. Jay Inslee outlining the difficult actions we must take to slow the spread. These restrictions have, and will continue to, cause hardship for many in our community, but taking no action would cause even greater harm that comes at the cost of human lives. The rapid uptick in COVID-19 cases across Washington state, and right here in Tacoma, means that we must all work together to contain this deadly virus.
During these challenging and difficult times – as we work with our community partners at Tacoma-Pierce County Health Department and the Pierce County Department of Emergency Management to address COVID-19 impacts – health and safety continues to be a top priority. We will continue to take every action we can to limit the toll on our families, our businesses, and our community as a whole.
Governments cannot conquer COVID-19 alone, and each one of us has a critical responsibility in preventing unnecessary deaths in Tacoma, Pierce County and Washington State. Our public and economic health depend on all of us in Tacoma coming together to choose safety in our everyday activities if we are to slow the spread of this virus. We can do this by wearing face coverings, practicing physical distancing, and limiting our non-essential contacts to just five people outside our household each week.
For face coverings to be effective, all of us need to pitch in. If 60 percent of us wear a face covering, COVID-19 cases can still rise at exponential rates. However, if we join together and more than 90 percent of us wear them – as they have in Yakima – there is scientific evidence that illustrates we can contribute to effectively slowing the spread of this deadly virus.
When you see someone wearing a face covering at the grocery store, they are demonstrating that they care and are concerned for your wellbeing and the wellbeing of the essential workers who continue to show up for our community. I am calling on each person in our community to actively join in saving lives by wearing a face covering to protect public health.
Our work is not over and we must remain vigilant. I hope you will join me in taking actions to protect the lives of our friends, family, essential workers and neighbors. And I am asking you to make choices that may save your life. When we work collectively toward a shared goal, our City is stronger and more resilient. Together, we will get through this because we are Compassionate Tacoma.