PORTLAND, OR (KPTV) - Gov. Kate Brown, Portland Mayor Ted Wheeler and Multnomah County Chair Deborah Kafoury addressed Oregonians on Friday night regarding COVID-19 and social distancing, urging people to “stay home and stay healthy.”

Brown called it an “order and a public awareness campaign,” while Wheeler said an additional official order is likely to follow, possibly on Monday.

"Here in Oregon we all see that a storm is coming, but we still have time to change course.” Governor Brown said. "Social distancing done well and done early saves lives. We have agreed on a plan called 'stay home, stay healthy. It's both an order, and a public safety campaign."

Wheeler said the order will not be called “shelter in place,” as that phrasing is typically used for natural disasters, such as earthquakes. But he said it would follow similar directives that have been issued in California, New York and Illinois. 

“This is not a lockdown,” Wheeler said.

However, all three officials made it clear dramatic action was necessary to slow the spread of the coronavirus pandemic.

Schools have been closed statewide through the end of April, restrictions have been placed on dine-in food and beverages at businesses, gathering of more than 25 people are prohibited, and health care providers have been ordered to only perform emergency procedures to conserve supplies.

“The power of these orders to limit the spread of the virus is diluted when we gather,” Kafoury said.

Kafoury said people just cannot do all the things they’re used to doing in the way they are used to doing them. She said there should be no gatherings, no parties, and people should avoid games like basketball, soccer or frisbee with people who are not in their household.

She said walking, jogging, cycling and skateboarding are all OK, when social distancing is observed, however she said people should avoid crowded trails and parks.

Brown said there is no additional forthcoming statewide executive order, referring to the number of executive orders she has put in place this week, however Wheeler said he’s ready to act independently on an order for the city of Portland, but he would prefer a more broad agreement at the county or state level.

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When asked if such an additional order would lead to enforcement, Wheeler said it’s not a good use of police resources for officers to be spending time monitoring social distancing. However, using an example of a bar full of people, Wheeler said citations could be issued.

“What we’re trying to do is change people’s behavior,” he said.

Wheeler asked people to use common sense.

“Let’s look out for each other. Let’s look out for the most vulnerable amongst us,” Wheeler said.

Brown reiterated the importance of social distancing measures to “flatten the curve” of COVID-19 cases.

“Your actions right now mean the difference between life and death,” she said.

There were 114 diagnosed cases of COVID-19 in Oregon, as of Friday. 

Copyright 2020 KPTV-KPDX Broadcasting Corporation. All rights reserved.

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(11) comments

Pameladancer

This is about power and control. I am not staying home. I am a Free American and not a Democrat. Homeless and migrant bums are out and about free to roam. Antifa will be out soon, attacking the elderly. Resist Tyranny. VOTE REPUBLICAN in November

lanquan

Mayor Wheeler,

As a businessman, I know that the worst thing I can do is to deliver bad news or partial news to any employee on a Friday.

As your message stated, "there will be more to follow on Monday" causing ominous clouds to appear in people's minds.

In this case, the citizenry is left to guess, surmise or gossip as to what may be coming. Needless stress added to an already volatile and ever changing situation.

Their weekend has been ruined by your callous and unwise decision to "add more come Monday".

You're supposed to reassure, to help a nervous populace but in fact, you've added needlessly to the strain of normal citizens.

When Monday comes and you deliver your (presumed) "stay at home" epistle, will you add that City Hall and the abundant number of city workers will be at home filing for unemployment? Or will you and other city workers be deemed "essential" thus freeing you all from the pain of no paycheck save unemployment? Share the pain with the constituency as anything less reaffirms that government doesn't really care and citizenry be damned.

Husky Loyalist

Now, this failed mahor who cannot even stop people from pooping on the sidewalk is joining his fellow failure to rule the state and dictate behavior of 2.4 million Oregonians when neither has the authority to order people to stay home.

sagebrush

Since Portland has told the Feds to shove it on many occasions, I wouldn't give that cesspool city one dime of federal aid.

WebFootSTi

mayor pookie is really showing us his intelligence using a crowded bar as an example of unapproved behavior as governor brownshirt has already shut down the bars...

lanquan

Now let's see: The Governor and the Mayor say stay at home is basically or will soon be in place. Kate tell's the workers displaced by restaurant closings as well as department store employees, et al that she "understands" their pain and sacrifice. Now I'm sure that the Governor, Mayor, city and county workers, teachers and all on the public dole will be surrendering their pay also? Like the taxpaying citizens who are being denied their livelihood I would expect our government employees to share equally in the pain of no pay and apply for unemployment? It's only fair. They all care so much about the public that they forbid us to work yet they go on getting normal pay? These people are hypocrites.

kip

she's like "you stay home and i'll be in the Mansion"

Kenny Rogers

I agree with you completely on this. Alot of employees have been displaced, and the people running the show have done absolutely NOTHING to aid the citizens.

PDX2MtHood

Everyone has been running and cycling and camping around Portland as usual (with less vehicular traffic of course).

Sun Tzu

'Governor urges ‘stay home, stay healthy’ in Oregon; Portland mayor says order to follow' I'll stay home the moment Kate Brown tenders her resignation, effective immediately.

Gloriarayn

This article doesn’t reflect the level of urgency or the point of their directive at all. You completely undercut their authority with the tone of this article.

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