Mandatory stay at home order leads to questions about some gray areas

SEATTLE - There wasn’t much social distancing at places like Green Lake this past Saturday, but on Tuesday there were no more crowds after Governor Inslee’s stay at home mandate.

“To think of others and not just of your own needs is what we need at this time, and I think that’s what the governor is trying to do,” Kirkland resident Nate Tribble said.

The new order says only essential businesses and workers are exempt from staying at home during the next two weeks.

But the definition of what is essential can be confusing in some cases.

    For example, some blended families asked Q13 News if they are affected by the mandate.

    “What does it mean for parenting plans? Is it still ok to have the meeting place we normally do?” Tribble said.

    Q13 first met the Tribble family back in the summer of 2017 while doing a story about how to keep their kids active.

    Now the Kirkland family has been cooped up in their condo determined to make a difference in the fight against the coronavirus

    “Focus on the positive,” Tribble said.

    Even in these difficult times, Tribble is staying hopeful.

    As for Tribble’s question, the Governor’s office says blended families can proceed as normal when it comes to logistics and parenting plans since it’s an essential function.

    Others are also inquiring if nannies can work for their families as usual. The Governor's Office initially told Q13 News that nannies could work but they have since clarified that only nannies who work for people with essential jobs can continue their job at this time.

    Law enforcement across the state says the Governor’s order may be a law for the next two weeks but they are not relying on enforcement to keep people home, just compliance.

    “There is no state in the union that would have the capacity to enforce something like this in any level of rigidity,” Spokesperson for WSP Chris Loftis said.

    Tribble says he wants to be apart of the solution but it won't make a big difference if everyone is not doing the same.

    Businesses like grocery stores and pharmacies, hotels and car repair shops can stay open. Restaurants can also continue to do business for takeout and delivery.

    People are allowed to go for a walk or a bike ride as long as they can keep the 6-foot distancing rule.

    The Department of Commerce says there will be more information to come before the mandate officially goes into effect on Wednesday, including the possibility of modifications after key questions were raised.

    You can go to for more information.