Oregon Gov. Kate Brown on Thursday announced new guidelines that are part of a three-phase plan for reopening the state beginning on May 15, while cautioning that the restrictions could be reinstated if coronavirus rates surge. The governor said she will begin loosening statewide restrictions on retail stores, youth programs, and daycares on May 15. Rural counties that have lower rates of the virus can reopen beauty salons, gyms, bars, and restaurants with certain limitations. Each of those areas are responsible for presenting plans to the state and must have contact tracing capabilities, Brown said. Restaurants and bars must enforce social distancing practices and gyms are required to adhere to a maximum person limit as well as frequent sanitation.
The governor said that all employees in businesses such as grocery stores, pharmacies, salons, and public transit must wear face coverings. “Every restriction we lift increases transmission and will increase cases,” Brown said at the press briefing. Based on data from phase one, the second phase will roll out after three weeks and will allow for office work and larger social gatherings.