For the second week in a row, a large group of Central Oregonians gathered in front of Redmond City Hall Friday afternoon to protest Gov. Kate Brown’s ‘Stay Home, Save Lives’ executive order.
People voiced their frustrations with the order at an open mic. Some protesters said it’s time to re-open the economy before more damage is done to people’s livelihoods.
“We need to reopen the economy,” Greg Booth, a Crooked River Ranch resident, said. “We need to get the money flowing again. People need the economy open.”
Deschutes County Commissioner Phil Henderson addressed the crowd and said he doesn’t know how seriously people should take the virus. He sympathized with the frustration that certain businesses have been forced to shutter.
“What I don’t like specifically about this coronavirus decision making, specifically in our state, is that they’re basically saying certain jobs you’re no longer free to do,” Henderson said.
Some protestors cited their distrust of government statistics and information, saying they believe the virus isn’t as dangerous as the Centers for Disease Control and the Oregon Health Authority say it is.
Rally attendees signed a petition to re-open the economy, which Henderson will give to the other county commissioners.
Redmond Police used barricades to block the street in front of City Hall to provide space for the protest.