On Sunday night, Mar. 22, 2020, a joint statement was issued by the eight strongly-elected (elected to position by voters rather than by City Council) Mayors of South King County – including Kent Mayor Dana Ralph – regarding COVID-19.

Auburn, Kent, Renton, Tukwila, Pacific, Algona, Enumclaw, and Federal Way stand united in their efforts.

The directive strongly urges residents of these cities to take more actions for public safety via quarantining.

“As your local elected officials, we may take additional steps to protect our communities and mandate those best practices issued by health professionals are followed,” the statement says. “The most imperative practice to reduce the spread of this virus is to stay home and avoid contact with others.

“We strongly urge our residents follow those best practices to prevent additional measures from being enacted. If these best practices are not followed, we will need to take further action.”

“The Mayors support and are following the Governors directives but are urging residents to take this matter more seriously before additional local measures are put into place,” a spokesperson said.

Here’s the full statement:

Joint Statement from the Mayors of Auburn, Kent, Renton, Federal Way, Tukwila, Enumclaw, Algona and Pacific:

As the results of COVID-19 become clearer there is no denying that it is both dangerous and deadly. The number of those diagnosed and those dying from it continues to climb at an alarming rate, especially in our region.

The Governor is evaluating next steps, as are we. As your local elected officials, we may take additional steps to protect our communities and mandate those best practices issued by health professionals are followed. The most imperative practice to reduce the spread of this virus is to stay home and avoid contact with others.

We strongly urge our residents follow those best practices to prevent additional measures from being enacted. If these best practices are not followed, we will need to take further action.

You can follow these best practices by:

      • Staying home unless necessary and avoiding nonessential outings
      • Only visiting stores for necessary purchases
      • Only purchasing reasonable amounts of basic products and leaving enough in the stores for others
      • Avoiding gathering in groups, even when outside in open air

The CDC, State Department of Health and King County Public Health have issued clear guidance on best practices for social distancing. They have closed gathering spots such as large events, bars and restaurants, rightfully so. Yet, residents and visitors to our communities are still not fully recognizing those best practices.

We can stop the COVID-19 virus from spreading but only with your help and full cooperation. This is a virus that is taking lives of people in our communities we all love and care about – we all have a role to play in stopping this.

We continue to support the Governor’s directives and urge you to review them by visiting King County Public Health’s website.

Thank you for your assistance and understanding. We are strong and resilient communities and with your help we will beat this.

Mayor Nancy Backus, Mayor Dana Ralph, Mayor Armondo Pavone, Mayor Jim Ferrell, Mayor Allan Ekberg, Mayor Jan Molinaro, Mayor Dave Hill and Mayor Leanne Guier