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Tuesday, 24 March 2020 17:58

Guide for OR Business Owners to Comply with Governor's New Executive Order

Written by Darrell W. Fuller, lobbyist, Northwest Auto Trades Association (NATA)


On March 23, Oregon Gov. Kate Brown issued an executive order immediately shutting down many Oregon businesses in an effort to slow the spread of Coronavirus.

Brown's executive order is unlike those issued by other governors, which shut down businesses except those on a detailed list deemed "essential." Some referenced a March 19 Department of Homeland Security document.

Brown flipped this concept on its head and issued an executive order specifically listing which businesses are not essential, shutting them down. Businesses not on her list are allowed to continue operating with some new rules.

Brown's executive order requires the following businesses to close immediately:

Amusement parks; aquariums; arcades; art galleries (to the extent that they are open without appointment); barber shops and hair salons; bowling alleys; cosmetic stores; dance studios; esthetician practices; fraternal organization facilities; furniture stores; gyms and fitness studios (including climbing gyms); hookah bars; indoor and outdoor malls (i.e., all portions of a retail complex containing stores and restaurants in a single area); indoor party places (including jumping gyms and laser tag); jewelry shops and boutiques (unless they provide goods exclusively through pick-up or delivery services); medical spas; facial spas; day spas; and non-medical massage therapy services; museums; nail and tanning salons; non-tribal card rooms; skating rinks; senior activity centers; ski resorts; social and private clubs; tattoo/piercing parlors; tennis clubs; theaters; yoga studios; and youth clubs.

If your business is not on the governor's list above, then good news---you can stay open (for now.) But there are new rules you must follow:

Required Social Distancing for Other Retail Businesses

6. ...I prohibit the operation of any other retail business not subject to paragraph 2 of this Executive Order, unless the business designates an employee or officer to establish, implement, and enforce social distancing policies, consistent with guidance from the Oregon Health Authority.

7. Retail businesses that fail to comply with paragraph 6 of this Executive Order will be closed until they demonstrate compliance.

So, if you are a retail business, which means you sell something---including services---and your employees interact with members of the public, you need to:

(a) Designate---in writing---an employee or officer to establish, implement and enforce social distancing policies;

(b) Establish, implement and enforce written social distancing policies for all employees and customers, indicating that everyone must maintain 6 ft. of separation, including separating employees from one another;

(c) Ensure all employees receive a copy of the written policies and acknowledge that they have received it, read it and will comply with it. An initial or signature is preferable;

(d) Make copies of the policies available to all customers;

(e) Require your manager of social distancing policies to indicate, in writing, who is responsible for enforcing the social distancing policies during all hours that your business is open;

This can be as simple as designating the manager on duty as the responsible person. Businesses need a paper trail showing a good faith effort to comply with establishing, implementing and enforcing social distancing policies;

(f) Your written social distancing policies should include explicit instructions to employees that they are not to use company time or vehicles to travel for any nonessential, non-work related purposes, to the maximum extent possible;

(g) Use this link to download specific advice for employers from the Oregon Health Authority on social distancing policies.

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