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Oregon COVID-19 updates June 29: Employment Department workers wasted hours not processing claims

As COVID-19 continues to impact Oregon and Southwest Washington, get the latest updates here.

PORTLAND, Ore. — Cases of COVID-19 began popping up in the United States in January. The first case in Oregon was reported on Feb. 28.

We've been posting a daily blog to track the changes in Oregon and Southwest Washington as we get them. CLICK HERE TO SEE THE LATEST UPDATES


As of Monday night:


11 p.m.

  • Data released by the Oregon Health Authority on Monday showed the continued spread of the coronavirus across the state. For the fifth week in a row, the number of cases and the positive test rate increased. Learn more
  • As the number of people known to be infected with COVID-19 continues to rise, Oregon Gov. Kate Brown is urging people to take precautions when celebrating the Fourth of July this upcoming weekend. Learn more
  • The federal tax deadline of July 15 -- which was already postponed from its traditional April 15 due to the coronavirus pandemic -- will not be postponed again. Learn more

7:20 p.m

  • As tens of thousands of people in Oregon waited for unemployment benefits, state workers who were paid to process their claims instead wasted hours scrolling through Instagram and Facebook at a temporary call center in Wilsonville, an employee told KGW. Learn more 
  • The state has announced face mask guidelines for businesses, but people still have a lot of questions about where masks are required. Our Verify team has answers. Learn more
  • Not all grocery store customers are wearing masks, and nobody's really sure how to enforce the rule, and that has grocery workers concerned. Learn more
  • Cheryl's on 12th is back open for dine-in service. Owners Ed and Cheryl Casey say customers will notice a lot of changes due to the COVID-19 crisis when they return to the restaurant. And the Caseys say those changes cost a lot of money. Learn more

2:10 p.m.

  • COVID-19 has claimed two more lives in Oregon, raising the state’s death toll to 204, the Oregon Health Authority reported Monday. A total of 146 new confirmed and presumptive cases of COVID-19 were also reported, bringing the state total to 8,485. Learn more
  • OHA also released its weekly testing summary. It shows that since testing began, Oregon’s cumulative positive testing rate is 3.4% of tests performed, which is considerably lower than the national average of 9%. But just for the week of June 20-27, the positive testing rate was 4.3%. Learn more

1:50 p.m.

  • Oregon Gov. Kate Brown announced that Oregonians statewide will be required to wear face coverings in indoor public spaces, beginning on Wednesday. The mandate applies to business owners, employees, and members of the public visiting indoor public spaces. The requirement is already in effect in eight counties. Learn more

8 a.m.

  • Yesterday, health officials announced 247 new and presumptive cases of COVID-19 in Oregon. This is the third day in a row and the fifth day during the pandemic that the state’s total daily numbers have surpassed 200. Learn more
  • The rush to buy fireworks is on in Clark County, and with major professional shows off this year because of the pandemic, the rush is huge. Before they could start selling yesterday at noon, people were lined up to buy. Learn more
  • Portland woman Amy Watson was diagnosed with COVID-19 more than two months ago and is still dealing with symptoms. She's far from alone, and she started a support group on social media to help others like her. Learn more

Note: The graphics below represent the most recent data, as of Friday, June 26. When OHA updates its data later today, the graphics will be updated.

INTERACTIVE: Oregon COVID-19 cases

INTERACTIVE: Oregon COVID-19 data by age group

INTERACTIVE: Oregon COVID-19 positive tests, negative tests and deaths

WATCH: Coronavirus latest updates | YouTube playlist

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