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Document Code No.: ACO 8-20-EO
Department/Issuing Agency: Department of Adult and Juvenile Detention
Effective Date: March 23, 2020
Approved: /s/ Dow Constantine, King County Executive

Type of Action: New

Signed document (PDF, 118.96 KB)



WHEREAS, on March 1, 2020, in my capacity as King County Executive, I issued a Proclamation of Emergency regarding the significant health emergency caused by novel coronavirus, or COVID-19 in King County; and


WHEREAS, RCW chapter 38.52, and King County Code chapters 2.56 and 12.52 authorize me to exercise the emergency powers vested in me as King County Executive; and


WHEREAS, the virus continues to spread rapidly, as of March 23, 2020 there were 1,040 confirmed cases of COVID-19 and 75 fatalities of COVID-19 in King County;


WHEREAS, King County provides essential services to the public; and


WHEREAS, the Department of Adult and Juvenile Detention (DAJD) operates the Work and Education Release Unit (WER); and


WHEREAS, WER is located in a designated and secure area on the 10th floor of the King County Courthouse in Seattle; and


WHEREAS, incarcerated individuals in WER attend work during the day and spend the rest of their time in WER; and


WHEREAS, in order to access WER participants must enter the King County Courthouse, proceed through the security area, hallways, and elevators of the courthouse, and interact with DAJD correctional officers; and


WHEREAS, individuals in WER leave the secure area for work or education, have contact with the community, and may unknowingly be exposed to COVID-19, which increases the risk of exposure to other individuals in WER, DAJD staff and other persons in the King County Courthouse; and


WHEREAS, the health and safety of DAJD staff, persons held in DAJD custody, and other persons in the King County Courthouse, as well as the public at large, are of paramount concern to the County, and


WHEREAS, the health and safety of DAJD staff is critical to the County’s overall efforts to respond to the emergency created by COVID-19, and


WHEREAS, the County is exercising many options for reducing the number of person’s in its custody, and


WHEREAS, the County is in need of space for housing persons who have been identified as being at risk for significant complications from COVID-19, and


WHEREAS, the County is in need of space for housing those infected by COVID-19 in the event that inmates become infected by the virus, and


WHEREAS, it is imperative that the County act to respond to and mitigate the risks of COVID-19; and


WHEREAS, this order is imminently necessary for the protection of life and property.




It is hereby ordered that the County’s Work and Education Release Unit is closed effective March 26, 2020, and will remain closed during the term of this emergency.


This order shall continue in force and effect until the March 1, 2020, Proclamation of Emergency is terminated by order of the Executive or action by the King County Council by ordinance.



Signed this 23rd day of March 2020 at Seattle, Washington



/s/ Dow Constantine
King County Executive

/s/ Norm Alberg
Director, Records and Licensing Services Division, Department of Executive Services