Safe Start Plan, Recreate Responsibly, Food Assistance & Election Year Restrictions

Dear friends and neighbors,

Continuing to follow the Stay Home, Stay Healthy order is critical to protect the health of our families and our neighbors, including the most vulnerable among us from contracting the coronavirus.  I want to thank you, sincerely, because I know that this is a sacrifice that comes at enormous cost to Washington workers, students, and businesses.

What this quarantine is putting us through hasn’t been easy, but the light at the end of this tunnel is getting slightly brighter. For instance, take this May 7 Seattle Times story with data from the CDC, it shows that we’ve slowed the spread of the virus significantly more than most other states in the nation. Let’s keep it up!

The Safe Start Plan

Thanks to the great job we’re doing, the state has begun to gradually open following the governor’s data-driven four-phased approach.

Safe start

Phase 1 began on May 5th. In this phase, we will continue to stay home and limit trips to only essential travel. Some outdoor recreation, including state parks and hiking, have been opened, as well as drive-in religious services.

Every 3 weeks, the Governor’s office and Cabinet will evaluate public health data to determine if we are ready to advance to the next phase. This data includes health care system readiness, testing capacity, contact tracing ability, and risk to vulnerable populations. Over the course of the four phases, our goal is to balance our public health and economic needs.

The metrics and steps in this plan are crucial components to reopening Washington safely, slowly, and thoughtfully. Following the guidelines in the Safe Start plan will help prevent both another peak in COVID-19 infection rates and a further extension of the Stay Home, Stay Healthy order. Read more about what each phase includes.

Recreate Responsibly

We are lucky to live in such a beautiful district and state, with quick access to the great outdoors. As you know, Governor Inslee re-opened fishing, hiking, hunting, and golfing, as long as people maintain social distancing. Here are a few pointers to make sure you are safe and your outing is a great experience:

recreate responsibly

It is more important than ever that we all keep up these best practices so we can stay healthy, continue to open our economy back up safely, and preserve our beautiful environment. Read more about the specifics here.

Food Assistance

Our state, local, and community partners are coming together to coordinate on the fight against hunger. The WA Food Fund will not only help keep our kids fed, but will also help food banks keep their shelves stocked. It’s a collaboration between government, nonprofits, and philanthropies to coordinate food distribution to those in need across the state. Learn more, volunteer or donate by visiting

If your family is struggling to get enough food, you can apply for food benefits or get help covering the basics by calling 211. Additionally, schools are providing free meals to students. Too often, the only meal a child gets in a day is the one provided by their public school.

Click on your school district below for information on schedules and locations for student meals:

lunch grapes

Also, there’s a food assistance resources page on the official Washington State COVID-19 website, which includes information on emergency food access.

Election Year Restrictions

I want to let you know that this is the last e-newsletter you will receive from me until after the November election is certified. That’s because during an election year, there are certain restrictions to prevent the use of state resources for election purposes. Among those restrictions are a freeze on legislators’ websites and on mass communications, such as e-newsletters.

Because my website will be static, meaning no new content can be added or updated during the freeze, I’ve made sure a lot of useful information is up for you to peruse. For example:

I have a new tab dedicated to COVID-19 resources that includes links to health care sites, resources for children and families as well as for businesses and workers, and even local resources, like cities and school districts within our district.

ramos covid tab

You will also be able to read the digital copy of the legislative review my seatmate, Rep. Lisa Callan and I mailed in April, in case you did not receive it.

That mailer included bills sponsored or co-sponsored by my seatmate and me, but we couldn’t fit much more in it. Since we did get a lot done this session and I believe you should have the option to read about it, I prepared this comprehensive report that compiles some of the most significant legislation passed this year.

Ramos contact me

Keep in Touch

While I won’t be able to reach out to you over the next few months, I don’t want to stop hearing from you. I’m still your state representative and my office will still be working. Erika, my Legislative Assistant, and I will continue answering your questions, providing you with information and helping you out in any way we can when you reach out to us either by phone or email. So don’t be a stranger and let me know how you’re doing.

Stay healthy,

Ramos sig