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Gov. Inslee says more places, events may require proof of vaccination

Fans do the wave during the game between the Seattle Mariners and the San Francisco Giants at T-Mobile Park on April 03, 2021 in Seattle, Washington. (Photo by Steph Chambers/Getty Images)

Governor Jay Inslee says you could expect to see more places asking for your vaccination card for entry.

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The governor said Thursday that the state will provide guidance to places and businesses in Washington that could have vaccination requirements by mid-May, which could include some cruises, sporting events, performing arts and school graduations.

“We are now going to have new guidelines for cruise ships on the Columbia River and out of the Port of Seattle. These new guidelines will allow cruises to take place where everybody’s vaccinated on the ship,” Inslee said.

The cruises will still not be allowed to enter Canadian or Mexican waters. It’s unknown yet if they will travel to other states.

“It’s a small example of the benefits of getting vaccinated,” the governor noted.

The governor’s office clarified to KIRO Radio that the state will only be providing guidance for businesses, but it will not be a mandate. The enforcement of any rules regarding vaccinations will be on the individual organizations or businesses. The option to allow unvaccinated people will remain, but venues that require vaccination would be able to have additional capacity and fewer spacing limitations.

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Gov. Inslee says he is in full support of private companies and nonprofits that want to have vaccine requirements. He says more colleges and universities are likely to add them, and he expressed his support of those efforts as well.

“I do think that in the next several weeks you will see increasing policies by the state and other entities — like colleges, and cruise lines, and everything else — that will create more incentives for folks,” he said.

He also said it’s possible the metrics in our state used to determine each county’s phase could soon be tied to county vaccination rates as well. Right now, any rollback decisions are based on case and hospitalization rates by county.

The KIRO Radio Newsdesk contributed to this report.

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