PORTLAND, Ore. — As summer camps get underway across the area, the KGW Verify team has received several questions about face mask requirements. Several viewers have reached out confused about the rules, since Oregon has now reopened its economy and lifted most COVID-19 safety precautions. Many are also wondering even if masks aren't required, should unvaccinated children wear them anyway?
Does Oregon require face masks at youth summer camps?
- Oregon Health Authority
- Centers for Disease Control
No, Oregon does not require face masks for children or staff at summer camps, but local camps can establish their own rules and procedures.
WHAT WE FOUND
According to the Oregon Health Authority, face masks are not required statewide, although they are encouraged for anyone who is unvaccinated in an indoor setting.
The state's face mask recommendations align with the CDC's youth camp guidance released back in May. The CDC says people who are unvaccinated should continue to wear masks indoors.
According to the CDC, people do not need to wear masks when outdoors unless they are in a crowded setting or engaged in activities that involve sustained close contact with other unvaccinated people.
The KGW Verify Team reached out to some summer camp organizers to check mask requirements since local camps can make their own decisions.
Tualatin Hills Parks and Recreation District (THPRD), the largest special parks district in Oregon, operates dozens of day camps both outdoors and indoors at nine different locations.
THPRD is requiring youth camp participants and staff to wear face coverings indoors but is allowing families to decide whether their kids wear masks at outdoor camps, according to THPRD's communications director Holly Thompson.
THPRD staff are still required to wear masks outdoors.
Portland Parks & Recreation (PP&R) has over 20 summer day camps each week and all are based outdoors. For that reason, face coverings are optional for staff and participants, according to Mark Ross with PP&R.
Do you have something you want us to verify? Let us know. Email us at email@example.com.
Watch more VERIFY stories here