The new health and safety protocols were developed in partnership between the Governor’s Office, the Oregon Health Authority, and the Portland Trail Blazers to ensure real-world implementation feasibility for large venues. Pending the final approval of Multnomah County’s vaccination equity plan, which will move the county into the Lower Risk level, the Trail Blazers will be the first indoor sports venue in Oregon to welcome fans back to vaccinated sections this week. Physically distanced sections will also be available.
“When fans left the Moda Center last March, it was one of the first signs this pandemic was about to change our lives in ways we hadn’t previously imagined,” said Governor Kate Brown. “Vaccines are the key to our return to normal life. It is a testament to the way Oregonians have united to battle this virus and get vaccinated in large numbers that, this week, the Rip City faithful can return to give our Trail Blazers the legendary home court advantage they deserve. If you haven’t gotten around to getting vaccinated yet, go do so today. Don’t miss your shot to cheer on the Blazers as they make a run at a championship.
“I’d like to thank the Trail Blazers front office for their partnership with my office and the Oregon Health Authority in this endeavor to develop protocols for vaccinated fan sections––and we will be expanding the health and safety protocols debuting in the Moda Center to other businesses, venues, and faith institutions that choose to implement them in Lower Risk counties.”
In addition to the new protocols for vaccinated sections, the Trail Blazers had previously implemented additional health and safety measures, including mask and distancing requirements, ventilation upgrades, concession plans, seating arrangements, and entrance and exit plans.
OHA will update health and safety guidance for Lower Risk counties this week to reflect the following changes, allowing the option for vaccinated sections for businesses, venues, and faith institutions:
- Vaccinated sections with no physical distancing or capacity limits will be allowed for fully vaccinated individuals ages 16 and older who provide verification of their vaccination status.
- Businesses, venues, and faith institutions may require additional health and safety protocols in vaccinated sections, such as mask wearing for vaccinated individuals.
- Because children ages 12-15 have only recently become eligible for vaccination, and children under 12 are not yet eligible, all children up to age 15 wearing a face covering will be permitted in vaccinated sections if accompanied by their fully vaccinated parent or guardian.
- Unvaccinated sections must adhere to all health and safety protocols, including the use of masks, physical distance, and capacity limits.