Seattle joins regional cities and counties in allowing public sector employees to work remotely into 2021 – GeekWire - Freelance Rack

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Tuesday, July 28, 2020

Seattle joins regional cities and counties in allowing public sector employees to work remotely into 2021 – GeekWire

The Seattle skyline. (GeekWire Photo / Kurt Schlosser)

Public sector employees throughout the Seattle region who have the ability to do their jobs remotely will be able to continue doing so until January 2021 to help prevent the spread of COVID-19, the localities announced Tuesday.

The City of Seattle has joined the Washington cities of Everett, Kenmore, Redmond, Shoreline and Tacoma as well as King, Pierce and Snohomish Counties, and the Port of Seattle and Port of Everett as part of a united approach to maximize physical distancing and combat coronavirus.

“If we disregard public health guidance, we risk an exponential surge of the virus in our communities which could overwhelm our health care system and cause another statewide stay home order,” Seattle Mayor Jenny Durkan said in a statement. “As one of the largest employers in Seattle, our telework extension is the right thing to do to keep our City workforce — and the communities we serve — safe and healthy.”

According to King County, the directive impacts about 5,000 out of the around 15,000 total employees just for that county.

Seattle and the others are following the lead of tech giants such as Amazon, which is allowing eligible workers to stay home until January, and Google, which told workers they can WFH until next summer.

Washington Gov. Jay Inslee announced the tightening of restrictions on gatherings and businesses last week as coronavirus cases surged across the state.

More than 53,300 Washington residents have tested positive for COVID-19 and 1,518 have died from complications associated with the virus, according to the state Department of Health.



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