Everett Mayor Cassie Franklin has issued a directive for all residents to stay home as the coronavirus continues to spread.

“I had to act in this way to protect my local community. From what I’m seeing in our city I feel that this was the right time to issue this directive,” she explained.

The directive does not apply to people working in fields considered essential, such as healthcare, grocery stores, pharmacies, gas stations, and even childcare facilitates, and more.

“Somebody asked me about childcare, why do we have kids still gathering? Well, nurses and doctors still need someplace to bring their children so they can go to work and take care of those who are sick,” Franklin said.

Mayor Franklin said they consulted other cities under similar directives as to what job and businesses are essential. She said, “If we have a business that is developing ventilators, we want to make sure they stay operational. And obviously we don’t want to interrupt the food supply chain, we need those businesses to stay operational.”

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Gov. Jay Inslee has not yet ordered a similar directive for the state of Washington. Everett is one of the first cities, in the state to do so.

Mayor Franklin said social distancing guidelines from state officials and national organizations didn’t do much to keep Everett residents home.

“The other day I took a walk and saw families still going to parks and groups of kids still gathering together. I was driving home from my office around 5 p.m. and it was still rush hour traffic,” she explained, “I felt the need to communicate with our residents the urgency of this matter, that we need to act quickly now, to save lives in our community.”

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She added, mental health is especially important in times like these, that’s why walks, runs, and hikes are on the list of activities still permitted, as long as social distancing guidelines are followed.

“I know this is a stressful time, it’s okay to go outside and take a walk, but really it is important to stay within your household unit to reduce the spread. Even if you don’t have any symptoms you can be a carrier,” Mayor Franklin said.

As for enforcing the directive, there isn't much they can do, but Mayor Franklin asks that everyone consider the health and safety of others.