US Washington to reopen statewide on June 30

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U.S. Seattle Mayor Jenny Durkan on Friday hailed Washington Governor Jay Inslee's announcement of statewide reopening on June 30.

"Our new normal is coming in June, and it's because of our community-wide commitment to getting vaccinated. The home stretch is here," Durkan said in a statement.

"Weeks ago, we were facing a surge of new cases and hospitalizations. While the variants continue to be in our community, we have seen the collective impact of our vaccination efforts which have saved lives and moved us significantly down the path to reopening," she noted.

Inslee's announcement came after the phase movement was paused for two weeks to review an emerging flattening trend in statewide COVID-19 data. As of Thursday, the plateau observed in COVID-19 activity became a decline in the state.

"This next part of our fight to save lives in Washington will focus on increasing vaccination rates and continuing to monitor variants of concern as we move toward reopening our state," Inslee said at a press conference Thursday.

According to Inslee, the full reopening could happen earlier than June 30 if 70% or more of Washingtonians over the age of 16 initiate vaccination.

"The CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) and DOH (Department of Health) are paving the way for a fully vaccinated future. Get vaccinated to enjoy the things we miss the most... Get vaccinated to go without a mask in most situations. Get vaccinated so we can protect our community-wide health and safety," Durkan said in her statement.

Washington state has administered over six million doses of vaccine, and 56% of Washingtonians have initiated vaccination, according to official data.

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