Board of Trustees Mandating Mask Use in All Public Indoor Settings throughout the Umatilla Indian Reservation

MISSION – The Board of Trustees is following the recommendation of Yellowhawk Tribal Health Center as the public health authority for the Confederated Tribes of the Umatilla Indian Reservation (CTUIR) and has approved a resolution to mandate mask use in all public indoor settings throughout the Umatilla Indian Reservation. The indoor mask order will go into effect at 12:01am on Friday, August 13, 2021.

The recommendation from Yellowhawk aligns with new guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Oregon Health Authority.  Under the resolution approved by the Board of Trustees, everyone is required to wear a mask in indoor public settings, regardless of vaccination status.

“The highly contagious Delta variant is spreading quickly among our community members within the boundaries of the Umatilla Indian Reservation, as it is throughout Umatilla County and much of the State of Oregon,” noted Kat Brigham, Chair of the Board of Trustees.  “We are currently seeing the highest positive testing numbers that we’ve had since the pandemic started in early 2020.  We want our community to be able to go to events and functions, but we highly recommend that you protect yourself and your community by continuing to wear a mask and socially distance as COVID-19 is spreading in our community,” Chair Brigham added.

As additional safety precautions, CTUIR leadership asks everyone to limit gatherings to those within your immediate household. However, if you do gather with people other than those in your household, please do so outside and maintain physical or social distancing.  If you are with people from a different household and distancing is not possible, we highly recommend that you wear a mask even while outdoors. Lastly, if you are sick even with very mild symptoms, please stay home.

Under CDC guidelines, if you have been vaccinated and you have come into contact with an individual who is known to have tested positive, you do not have to quarantine. However, you should continue to monitor yourself for symptoms and get tested if you start to develop symptoms or feel sick. Finally, if you have not yet been vaccinated, please consider getting vaccinated to protect yourself, your family and loved ones, and the community at large. All of the vaccines available are safe and highly effective in protecting against severe illness and death from COVID-19.