Oregon is considering indefinitely mandating masks and social distancing in all businesses, cutting an opposite path from other states that are easing pandemic rules as vaccinations grow.
The liberal state would keep the rules in force until they are “no longer necessary to address the effects of the pandemic in the workplace,” according to the proposal.
Michael Wood, administrator of the state’s Department of Occupational Safety and Health, told The Associated Press the move is necessary to address a technicality in state law that requires a “permanent” rule to keep current restrictions from expiring.
“We are not out of the woods yet,” he said.
Wood’s effort has generated significant backlash, including a petition with 60,000 signatures.