June 30, 2021 Updated Guidance

Governor Inslee released a statement yesterday afternoon reaffirming that businesses may mostly return to business-as-usual effective today Wednesday, June 30th. Updated guidance was also released. You can read more about the Governor’s announcement in his accompanying press release.

Indoor and outdoor guidance effective June 30

Effective 12:01 AM on June 30, all industry sectors previously covered by guidance in the Healthy Washington – Roadmap to Recovery or the Safe Start Reopening Plan may return to usual capacity and operations, with limited exceptions for large indoor events (any event with more than 10,000 simultaneous participants in an indoor, enclosed space.)

Reopening guidance:

  1. Vaccine verification/negative testing: For Wineries please see guidance below specific to employers in our industry
  2. Capacity limitations: No restrictions in restaurants, bars, stores, businesses, theaters etc. (except large indoor events)
  3. For Wineries, this includes the return use of our bar area!
  4. Physical distancing: No requirements
  5. Facial coverings: Not required for vaccinated individuals, unless the business chooses to require them
  6. Travelers: Follow CDC recommendations

Guidance Specific to Employers Regarding Fully Vaccinated vs. Not, including Masks, Methods for Vaccine Verification, and More

Requirements for places of employment issued by the Washington State Department of Labor & Industries have been updated herePlease read these carefully and thoroughly! This resource includes:

  1. Detailed options for fully vaccinated workers to go without a mask
  2. Methods for verification of worker vaccination status
  3. Employers must be able to show the process used to verify employee vaccination status. However, they do not need to keep an actual copy of the employee’s vaccination records. Acceptable types of verification include:
    1. Vaccine card or photo of vaccine card
    2. Documentation from a health care provider
    3. State immunization information system record
    4. A hard copy or electronically signed self-attestation from the employee.
  4. Choices workers have to continue to mask up
  5. And other updated guidance to prevent the spread of COVID-19 on the job and help employers meet their obligations to provide a safe and healthy workplace.

From all of us at the Washington Wine Institute, we want to say a big “THANK YOU” to every one of our members for your amazing ability to stay nimble, creative, and do whatever was necessary to both keep your employees and customers safe during the pandemic while also working tirelessly to keep your doors open and wine sales happening to the extent possible.

When March 16, 2020 brought us a full business shutdown and the future became very unknown, we went to work and never stopped pushing within our Governor’s office, LCB, Dept of Health, Labor and Industries, Department of Commerce, and all state agencies to advocate as aggressively as possible for our members including pushing back on harmful ideas and constantly pitching ways they can accept temporary sales and operation rules to help us survive the pandemic. From curbside service, to home delivery, to (sometimes very) creative ways to utilize our outdoor spaces, to “open air dining” allowances so we can use our permanent spaces, and so much more. We also tried to provide consistent and timely communications and sent over 40 pandemic-related emails since March 2020 as a commitment make sure we provided as much support and guidance as possible.

We hope this work and effort helped your winery these past very difficult 15 months. Your team at WWI could not have done this work without your investment in us via dues and your many phone calls, emails, attendance at webinars, and the many ways we got through the business restrictions portion of the pandemic together. We have a lot more to do as we look forward to the rest of 2021 and into 2022, and we are humbled to have every one of our members and incredibly grateful for your positive support and expert guidance.