Two-week ‘freeze’ begins today across Oregon


Restrictions in effect through Dec. 2

Nov. 18, 2020 — On Nov. 13, Gov. Kate Brown announced a statewide two-week “freeze” in an effort to help curb the continued rise of COVID-19 cases in Oregon. The freeze goes into effect beginning today and will continue through Dec. 2., at which point the freeze could be extended depending on the coronavirus case trajectory. Tuesday, the governor officially issued the directive through Executive Order 20-65.

As with the Governor’s previous executive orders related to COVID-19, all of the freeze measures are enforceable by law upon both individuals and businesses.

“I expect local law enforcement to continue to use an education first approach, but Oregonians need to understand that these rules are enforceable under law. A large majority of Oregonians continue to do the right thing to protect themselves, their loved ones, and their neighbors,” Brown said Tuesday. “However, when Oregonians don’t take COVID-19 seriously, and don’t take steps to reduce the spread of the disease, they put all of us at risk. We need all Oregonians to use common sense, make smart choices, and take seriously their individual responsibilities during a public health emergency.”

The new restrictions come in the wake of the state’s third day with more 1,000 COVID-19 cases since reaching that milestone last Thursday, when the Oregon Health Authority reported 5,177 new cases — up 46 percent from the last week of October. Health authority officials say small social gatherings are driving the surge, and during a press conference last week to announce targeted restrictions in the most-effected counties, Brown implored Oregonians to alter or cancel get-together plans for the Thanksgiving holiday.
For the next two weeks, the following restrictions and guidelines apply statewide:

 

Immediate closures through Dec. 2:

  • Gyms and fitness organizations
  • Indoor recreational facilities, museums, all indoor entertainment activities, as well as indoor pools and sports courts
  • Outdoor entertainment and public activities such as aquariums, gardens and tours
  • Any venues that include both indoor or outdoor events, including fundraisers and community meals

Businesses restrictions:

  • Employees are strongly encouraged to work from home if possible and offices are asked to the closed to the public
  • Restaurants are limited to delivery and take-out only
  • Grocery stores, pharmacies, retail stores and malls — both indoor and outdoor — are being limited to 75 percent capacity and, whenever possible, are encouraged to implement curbside pick-up.

Social gathering restrictions:

  • Must be limited to no more than 6 people total, from no more than 2 households. This includes gatherings either indoors or outdoors
  • Faith-based organizations are limited to a maximum of 25 people indoors or 50 people outdoors
  • There are is no indoor visitation at long-term care facilities or group homes

 

The governor’s two-week freeze does not apply to, or change, current health and safety protocols for the following:

  • Personal services (such as barber shops, hair salons, and non-medical massage therapy)
  • Congregate homeless sheltering
  • Outdoor recreation and sports
  • Youth programs
  • Childcare
  • Kindergarten through grade 12 schools
  • Kindergarten through grade 12 sports that are currently allowed
  • Current Division 1 and professional athletics exemptions
  • Higher education facilities

All of these are allowed to continue operating under the guidance and regulations previously issued by the Oregon Health Authority (OHA). For more information, visit govstatus.egov.com/or-covid-19.

Brown has also announced a travel advisory in coordination with California and Washington. Effective immediately, those entering Oregon from another state for non-essential travel — including returning residents — “… should limit their interactions to their immediate household for 14 days,” according to the advisory.

This recommendation does not apply to individuals who cross state or country borders for essential travel. Essential travel includes “work and study, critical infrastructure support, economic services and supply chains, health, immediate medical care, and safety and security.”

Brown said areas with the highest rates of infection might remain under the freeze for longer than two weeks.

Advertisement


Video News