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Oregon Announces Phase-One Reopening Beginning May 15

Information provided by Cascade Employers Association.

Today, Governor Brown announced new guidance and a three phase plan regarding the reopening of Oregon (view the governor’s presentation slides here). Specifically, counties that meet certain pre-requisites may reopen on May 15, along with restaurants and bars, personal care facilities including salons and gyms, retail shops, and childcare facilities including some summer schools and summer camps. The announcement stated that concerts, sporting events and festivals will not be permitted in Oregon until effective prevention and treatment for COVID-19 (such as a vaccine) is available. Accordingly, Governor Brown stated such events should be canceled or modified through the end of September.

The announcement outlined general guidance for Oregon Employers. Steps include but are not limited to:

  • Comply with any of the Governor’s Executive Orders that are in effect.
  • Know the signs and symptoms of COVID-19 and what to do if employees develop symptoms at the workplace.
  • Understand how COVID-19 is transmitted from one person to another—namely, through coughing, sneezing, talking, touching, or via objects touched by someone with the virus.
  • Make health and safety a priority by implementing safeguards to protect employees and the public. Federal and state guidelines, including sector-specific guidance, will help you determine which safeguards are recommended or are required; for example, use of personal protective measures such as face coverings or masks.
  • Continue with physical and social distancing requirements.
  • Continue teleworking whenever possible.
  • Establish regular disinfecting and sanitization process and schedule.
  • Consider modifying employee schedules and travel to reduce unnecessary close physical contact (physical distance of less than six feet between people).
  • Be aware of protected leave requirements and plan ahead for any anticipated workforce adjustments.

Below are the specific guidelines for each sector:

Additionally, last week, the Governor announced the following sectors are able to reopen on May 1 with the following guidelines in place:

Along with the specific business guidelines, counties and regions will have to meet seven prerequisites before entering Phase One of the reopening plan:

  1. Declining prevalence of COVID-19
  2. Minimum Testing Regimen
  3. Contact Tracing System
  4. Isolation/Quarantine Facilities
  5. Finalized Statewide Sector Guidelines
  6. Sufficient Health Care Capacity
  7. Sufficient PPE Supply

If a county sees an increase in COVID-19 or fails to maintain the standards outlined, Phase One restrictions will be re-imposed. After a county has 21 days of compliance in Phase One, they are allowed to move onto Phase Two. Phase Two and Phase Three have yet to be announced.

Lastly, the announcement for reopening Oregon included general guidance for the public. Oregonians should:

  • Stay home if you are sick.
  • To avoid exposure to COVID-19, people who are at risk for severe complications (over age 60 or have underlying medical conditions) should stay home even if you feel well.
  • If you become symptomatic (cough, fever, shortness of breath) while in public, please return home and self-isolate immediately. Contact your health care provider if you need medical attention.
  • Practice good hand hygiene with frequent handwashing for at least 20 seconds or use hand sanitizer (60-95% alcohol content).
  • Cover coughs/sneezes with elbow or tissue. If you use a tissue, immediately discard tissue in garbage and wash your hands.
  • Avoid touching your face.
  • Practice physical distancing of at least six (6) feet between you and people who you do not live with.
  • Use cloth, paper or disposable face coverings in public. As Oregon is reopening and restrictions are being lifted on businesses and public spaces, it may be difficult to ensure that you can stay six feet away from others at all times.
  • Stay close to home. Avoid overnight trips and minimize other non-essential travel, including recreational day trips to destinations outside the community where you live.
  • Travel the minimum distance needed to obtain essential services; in rural areas, residents may have to travel greater distances for essential services, while in urban areas, residents may only need to travel a few miles for those services.

Information provided by Cascade Employers Association.

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