It's not just the mayor of Portland who wants Gov. Kate Brown to order Oregonians to stay home during the coronavirus outbreak.
A group representing 25 Portland-area mayors, the Metropolitan Mayors' Consortium, today asked the governor to issue the order.
"Collectively, the region's mayors are doing everything in our power to protect the health, safety and livelihood of more than 1.7 million Oregonians," says MMC chair and Gresham Mayor Shane Bemis in a statement.
"Republican or Democrat, big city or small, we are in clear agreement," he says. "The time for action is now. Delaying this order puts our residents, our first responders and our health care system at extreme risk."
That's significant, because Portland Mayor Ted Wheeler has said he'll issue an order for the city of Portland as soon as Monday even as he has asked the governor to issue an order statewide.
Now Wheeler has the support of the mayors' group: elected officials representing 40 percent of the state's population.
Brown held a confusing press conference March 21 with Wheeler and Multnomah County Chair Deborah Kafoury in which she continued to call on Oregonians to stay home, talked about an order, but said she had no plans to demand they shelter in place. "At this point in time, I am not planning an additional statewide order or directive," she said.
The group of mayors convened by conference phone Saturday and sent a letter to the governor after the group voted "by an overwhelming majority," according to a press release, to support the policy.
They argue specifically for closing all nonessential businesses except those that can have employees work from home, that private and public gatherings should be prohibited and that travel, except that which is absolutely necessary, should be banned.
Medical and doctor groups have also supported a shelter in place order, including Oregon Health & Science University, the Oregon Association of Hospitals and Health Systems, and the Oregon Public Health Association.
Those groups have been joined by the Oregon chapter of the American College of Physicians.
"As frontline clinicians working in clinics, emergency departments, hospital wards, and intensive care units across the state, we support the statewide implementation of statewide stay at home orders as quickly as possible," says Oregon ACP governor Marianne Parshley, M.D., FACP.
Update, 3:30 pm: The governor's office says that "additional guidance on this will be forthcoming soon."
"We are urging all Oregonians to stay home as much as possible, avoid gatherings larger than 10 people, and to maintain proper social distancing in grocery stores and other public settings," says Brown spokesman Charles Boyle. "Doing so will save lives and prevent further economic impacts to Oregon families and businesses."