SafetyCulture Summit 2020

Reopening Oregon

Keep COVID-19 cases under control and safely operate your business by following safety guidelines in the Beaver State

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Published October 13th, 2020

Reopening Oregon

Governor Kate Brown acknowledges that reopening the State of Oregon comes with risks so in order to safely operate businesses and have employees report back to work, the governor calls upon fellow Oregonians to comply with the safety guidelines that follow the guidance of medical professionals and public health experts.

The State of Oregon during the COVID-19 Pandemic

After the governor declared a state of emergency on March 8, 2020, Oregon implemented safety measures and state-wide restrictions to help control the spread of COVID-19. As of writing, Oregon has over 19,000 confirmed COVID-19 cases and more than a hundred new cases reported daily by mid-June, prompting the government to take immediate action to address the sudden spike in new cases.

Reopening Oregon in Phases

The governor of Oregon released an executive order that identified phases of reopening and provided guidelines for Oregonians and businesses to follow in order to keep the impact of the pandemic under control and help employees as well as the general public stay safe and strong in the Beaver State.


Effective May 15, 2020, the baseline requirement is applicable state-wide and it provides guidelines such as social distancing of 6 feet between individuals, sector-specific guidance for businesses that are allowed to operate, and the option for employees to work-from-home whenever possible.

Phase I

Counties that wish to transition to Phase I ahead of a state-wide transition can apply subject to approval by the government. During Phase I, some restrictions are loosened and certain businesses such as those in personal care services are allowed to operate as long as they comply with safety guidelines.

Phase II

After 21 days in Phase I, counties can apply for transition to the second phase of reopening. After the sudden spike in daily reported COVID-19 cases in mid-June, however, the government has put the approval of Phase II transition on hold. For the counties already approved for Phase II, restrictions are relaxed further and more sectors can reopen such as venue and event operators of places of worship, sports courts, and theaters provided that they follow Phase II guidance.

Phase III

The final phase for reopening Oregon means that there is already a reliable treatment or prevention for COVID-19.

Complying with Mandatory Safety Guidelines

The government of Oregon released a general guidance for all businesses as well as other guidelines specific to certain sectors or industries. Following safety guidelines, such as the one implemented for face covering, not only will allow businesses to operate and avoid closure due to non-compliance but also help with keeping the pandemic under control. Students who will attend in-person classes are also required to wear masks as a safety precaution. Minimizing the risks of the spread of COVID-19 allows the general public to have a modicum of normalcy and be able to get back to work safely as restrictions are loosened so long as medical trends remain favorable in the state.

Tool for Implementing and Monitoring Safety

Preventing sudden spikes in reported COVID-19 cases can help avoid roll backs in reopening. Being aware of the latest guidelines and reinforcing their proper implementation can help maintain safety in the workplace and avoid the spread of the disease. iAuditor by SafetyCulture is a powerful safety inspection software that has access to a collection of free inspection checklists created based on the latest best practices and existing guidelines that help businesses operate during the COVID-19 pandemic. Business owners and managers can use iAuditor for free and utilize the checklists made available for everybody.


Please note that these checklists, while created with the latest best practices available, provide basic information only and are not intended to take the place of medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. You should also seek your own professional advice to determine if the use of such checklists are permissible in your workplace or jurisdiction.


Erick Brent Francisco

SafetyCulture staff writer

As a staff writer for SafetyCulture, Erick is interested in learning and sharing how technology can improve work processes and workplace safety. Prior to SafetyCulture, Erick worked in logistics, banking and financial services, and retail.