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Indybay Feature
Mandatory Restrictions on Public Movements and Gatherings to Combat Coronavirus
by Mick
Monday Mar 9th, 2020 6:35 AM
Washington State Officials are considering mandatory measures for social distancing as part of the state’s effort to combat the coronavirus outbreak, Gov. Jay Inslee said Sunday [March 8, 2020] while appearing on Face The Nation.
A former U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) commissioner said it’s likely that extraordinary maneuvers will become necessary. “I think no state and no city wants to be the first to basically shut down their economy. But that’s what’s going to need to happen,” said Scott Gottlieb, who led the FDA from 2017 to 2019 and who appeared on “Face the Nation” after Inslee. “States and cities are going to have to act in… the national interest right now to prevent a broader epidemic.”

Under state law, Gov. Inslee could cancel large public and private gatherings. He also could set a curfew banning people from being out in public during certain times, prohibit the use of certain streets and highways, and bar the sale of items that could endanger the health of Washington residents. Anyone violating such orders could be found guilty of a gross misdemeanor. (Seattle Times)

Even if state-wide restrictions are not enacted, local city and county governments could impose their own restrictions. For example, Seattle’s emergency declaration has given Mayor Jenny Durkan the ability to bypass regulations usually required for spending, contracting, borrowing, temporary hiring and siting facilities. Seattle city ordinances say Durkan has the authority to close streets and businesses, cancel events, order curfews and impose price controls.

According to the CDC "States have police power functions to protect the health, safety, and welfare of persons within their borders. To control the spread of disease within their borders, states have laws to enforce the use of isolation and quarantine."

Read the complete article at: https://rainier-redoubt.blogspot.com/2020/03/mandatory-restrictions-on-public.html
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