Oregon Government Response to COVID-19

An ongoing list of enacted Oregon State legislation related to employment issues and COVID-19.

(as of May 1, 2020)

Governor Kate Brown’s executive order directs Oregonians to stay at home.  This Order “remains in effect until ended by the governor.”  As of May 1, some non-urgent medical procedures can resume if the hospital, medical office, or dental office meets the state requirements for COVID-19 safety precautions.  Additional restriction may be eased depending on numerous factors, including the declining number of COVID-19 cases, availability of personal protective equipment, and greater ability to test for new COVID-19 cases.


(as of April 1, 2020)

Oregon’s Employment Department has issued temporary rules for unemployment insurance benefits.  These new rules expand eligibility related to COVID-19.


(as of March 23, 2020)

On March 23, 2020, Governor Brown issued Oregon Governors Order 03.23.20 significantly tightening social distancing guidelines.

The new guidelines provide the following restrictions related to businesses or employment:


  • It closes and prohibits shopping at specific categories of retail businesses, for which close personal contact is difficult to avoid, such as arcades, barber shops, hair salons, gyms and fitness studios, skating rinks, theaters, and yoga studios.
  • It requires businesses not closed by the order to implement social distancing policies in order to remain open, and requires workplaces to implement teleworking and work-at-home options when possible.
  • It directs Oregonians to stay home whenever possible, while permitting activities outside the home when social distance is maintained.  When telework and work-from-home options are not available, businesses must designate an employee / officer to establish, implement, and enforce social distancing policies, including business-critical visitors.
  • It outlines new guidelines for child care facilities, setting limits and rules on amounts of children allowed in care, and outlining that child care groups may not change participants


Failure to comply with this Executive Order will be considered an immediate danger to public health and subject to a Class C misdemeanor.

(As of March 18, 2020)

None of note to date.


This is not intended to be an all-inclusive list of all COVID-19 related State legislature, or even all legislature that may tangentially affect employment. 

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