Executive order imposes stricter social distancing protocals, closes more businesses

Following pressure from leaders across the state, including Gresham Mayor Shane Bemis, Gov. Kate Brown is ordering Oregonians to stay home unless they are getting groceries, going to work or engaged in important activities that cannot wait.

"I am issuing a new executive order further requiring social distancing measures because we know this is the most effective way to flatten the curve and slow the spread of (novel coronavirus)," Gov. Brown said in a statement. "I hope everyone in Oregon abides by its core message: stay home unless absolutely necessary."

The Stay Home to Stay Healthy Executive Order, put into effect Monday morning, March 23, closed more businesses, imposed penalties for failing to comply and required that open businesses enforce social distancing guidelines.

The city of Gresham said it is looking into the best way to implement and comply with the new order, including reaching out to affected businesses and organizations.

"Heed the orders you have been given to stay home," Bemis said. "It may very well save your life, and it will save the lives of the people you love the most: your friends, family members and loved ones."members and loved ones," Bemis said.

With the order, all non-essential social and recreational gatherings of individuals are prohibited, regardless of size, if a distance of at least six feet cannot be maintained. Gatherings of members of the same household are permitted.

All shopping at specific categories of retail businesses, for which close personal contact is difficult to avoid, is prohibited. That includes arcades, barber shops, hair salons, gyms and fitness studios, skating rinks, theaters, and yoga studios.

Businesses not closed must implement social distancing policies to remain open, and requires workplaces to implement teleworking and work-at-home options when possible.

Oregonians are told to stay home whenever possible, while permitting activities outside the home when social distance is maintained. Playgrounds, sports courts and skate parks have all been closed.

There are also new guidelines for child care facilities, setting limits and rules on the amounts of children allowed in care.

Failure to comply with the stay home order will be considered an immediate danger to public health and lead to a Class C misdemeanor.

"This order is designed to flatten the curve over the coming weeks, preserving scarce hospital space and equipment. It will also ensure that any place of business that remains operational does its part to enforce social distancing rules," Gov. Brown said. "It is designed to be more sustainable over time, to allow Oregonians to keep their jobs when their work does not add to the growth of COVID-19 in Oregon."

Read the full details on all the businesses listed in the executive order at

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