Oregon diners can begin returning to full dining rooms mask-free by July, Gov. Kate Brown announced in a press conference today, June 25. The state will retire the majority of its COVID-19 safety protocols by June 30, including capacity limits, mask requirements, and social distancing mandates.
Earlier this year, Brown announced that the state would start to lift its COVID-19 safety mandates once 70 percent of Oregon adults received at least one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine. Currently, just over 35,000 Oregonians need to get the COVID-19 vaccine to reach the 70 percent benchmark. Today, however, the governor signed an executive order that will lift the state’s risk-level framework and those mandated safety restrictions once it hits that target or by June 30 — whichever comes first. The state’s emergency declaration will stay in place “for the limited purpose of supporting the state’s recovery,” Brown says — in other words, it allows the state to quickly access resources and funds to aid the recovery process.
Over the last two months, some restaurants and bars have already begun to see those rules fall away: The state has allowed businesses to abandon capacity and mask requirements as long as they check customers for proof of vaccination. While some have expressed frustration over the premise of “vaccine carding,” a number of Portlanders wouldn’t feel comfortable eating inside a full-capacity restaurant without some sort of vaccination carding. Whether they’re checking vaccination cards or not, by the end of next week, restaurants can fill their dining rooms completely for the first time in 15 months.
• Oregon’s COVID-19 hub [Official]
• Restaurants Can Let Vaccinated Oregonians Enter Maskless — as Long as Customers Can Prove They’re Vaccinated [EPDX]
• Starting May 27, Portland Restaurants Can Waive Capacity Limits in ‘Vaccinated Sections’ [EPDX]
• Many Portland Diners Want to See Restaurants Check Vaccination Status, Despite National Backlash [EPDX]
• How Coronavirus Is Impacting the Portland Restaurant World [EPDX]