Tribal Government & News

Tribal government enters second phase of re-opening on June 15

06.15.2020 Dean Rhodes Tribal government, Health & Wellness


By Dean Rhodes

Smoke Signals editor

The Grand Ronde Tribal government moved into its second phase of re-opening on Monday, June 15, which will allow programs that provide direct services to the membership to increase onsite services or meeting opportunities if necessary.

In addition, General Manager David Fullerton announced via e-mail on Friday, June 12, increased outdoor activities and gatherings will be allowed.

The incremental re-opening is buoyed by the fact that the Grand Ronde Health & Wellness Center has conducted 139 COVID-19 coronavirus tests as of Monday, June 15, and 138 have returned negative with one result still outstanding.

The Tribal government went into a partial shutdown in mid-March in response to the spread of the coronavirus in Oregon. Only essential employees reported to work to keep providing services to the membership.

On Monday, May 18, the Tribal government started a cautious re-opening with employees required to wear masks while interacting in public or with others, no walk-in visitors allowed and employees were screened for possible fever before being allowed to work.

Most of those Phase 1 requirements remain in effect for employees as the Tribal government moves into Phase 2, Fullerton said.

“The employees have done a great job in Grand Ronde to prevent the spread of the virus and we are asking all to keep up the good work as we continue to move forward,” Fullerton said.

Fullerton added that the increase in coronavirus cases in Yamhill and Polk counties is attributable to increased testing and better contact tracing in Oregon.

“While this is all good news, we still need to remain diligent at work and away from work to make sure we are not putting our co-workers or those we serve at risk,” Fullerton added.