Business & Worker Newsletter

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          MAR. 10, 2021

The Business and Workers update is a weekly newsletter providing news and information to help businesses and workers navigate the COVID-19 pandemic. The information is compiled by the state Economic Resiliency Team (ERT), part of the Joint Information Center.

What you should know about...

COVID-19 Response

More than 2 million doses of COVID-19 vaccine administered in Washington

DOH announced that health care providers have given more than two million doses of COVID-19 vaccine since rollout began in mid-December. This milestone follows several major achievements in the past week, including reaching the state’s goal of giving 45,000 doses of vaccine per day and approaching 100,000 doses of vaccine administered at four state-led mass vaccination sites in just six weeks.

Read the full news release here.

Department of Health adopting CDC guidance on safe behaviors post-vaccine

The Washington State Department of Health (DOH) is adopting the guidance released by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) regarding post-vaccine behavior.

If someone has been fully vaccinated, they can:

  • Gather indoors with fully vaccinated people in private residences without wearing a mask and,
  • Gather indoors with unvaccinated people from one other household in private residences (for example, visiting with relatives who all live together) without masks, unless any of those people or anyone they live with has an increased risk for severe illness from COVID-19.

The CDC is quite clear that vaccinated people should continue to wear masks when they're in public, avoid crowds and take other precautions when gathering with unvaccinated people who are at high risk of serious illness from COVID-19.

Read the full news release here.

To assess eligibility to receive COVID-19 vaccine, please visit the recently updated DOH Phase Finder tool. View a list of vaccine locations here.

What you should know about...

Resources for small businesses

Requirements and Resources webinars support Washington’s business comeback efforts

The COVID-19 Impact Webinar, a free one hour, monthly webinar includes the Governor’s Office of Regulatory Innovation and Assistance and the state departments’ of Employment Security, Labor and Industries, and Revenue. These partners provide an overview of resources, updates, emergency rule changes, and other impacts affecting small businesses to create a new successful path forward. Subject matter experts are available online answering questions throughout the webinar. Click here for more information on the monthly series and register online. The Spanish webinar is on Tuesday, March 30, 9 a.m. Click here for more information.

The new webinar “Starting Your Business in Washington.”, launched in March, and the next one is on April 14 at 2 p.m. The webinar includes information about business registration and licensing, other regulatory requirements, and resources for further assistance. Click here for more information and to register online or call 800-917-0043.

New masking tool available from Labor and Industries

The Washington State Department of Labor and Industries (LNI) has released a new virtual tool meant to help workers and business owners understand specifically what type of mask to use depending upon activity and setting. Follow the prompts and choose the right mask for the right task to help prevent the spread of COVID-19 at work in L&I’s Mask Selection Guide.

What you should know about...

Unemployment Benefits

Extended Benefits set to end and what’s next

Due to the lower unemployment rate in Washington state, the U.S. Department of Labor has notified the Employment Security Department (ESD) that our state’s Extended Benefits program is ending March 13, 2021. Individuals receiving Extended Benefits, can be paid through the week ending March 13, 2021.

The U.S. Congress is currently working on a stimulus bill to extend unemployment benefits. If this bill passes, individuals can be eligible for additional weeks of Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Compensation (PEUC). Individuals should continue to file weekly claims and look out for more information from ESD about the federal stimulus bill. It is not necessary to call the claims center with questions about this as we continue to experience extremely high call volumes. For more information, please visit ESD’s benefit extensions page.