Mike Knick, the owner of Graham Fitness in Washington, made the courageous decision to keep his gym open in spite of the state’s COVID-19 lockdown orders because he knows physical fitness is critical for maintaining a healthy body and sound mind.
But on Dec. 2, 2020, Washington Department of Labor & Industries made the very un-courageous decision to slap the business with an order and notice of immediate restraint, informing Knick that criminal penalties apply for non-compliance.
The order reads in part:
You are hereby directed to:
Cease operations that are prohibited by the Governor’s proclamation 20-25.6 until such time they are approved under the Governor’s Safe Start-Stay Healthy orders.
Pursuant to Governor Inslee’s order, only certain business activities may resume business activities, in order to protect the health and safety of workers and the public.
By being open for business, (Graham Fitness) presents a threat to the public health and safety of its customers and employees given the ongoing COVID-19 epidemic in Washington State.
“The Freedom Foundation will continue to stand by these brave business owners against destructive government overreach by bureaucrats who haven’t had to miss a paycheck,” said Aaron Withe, Freedom Foundation National Director.
Knick explained, “We’ve been doing everything we can to just make it flourish and help our community and give our employees a living and make a living on the side for ourselves.
“They could fine me a million dollars a day,” he said. “What does it matter if my business is going to shut down if I shut down?”
“We’re not afraid,” Knick declared. “Gov. Jay Inslee, I think you need to take a big step back and look at all the damage you’re doing and all the people you’re hurting.”