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Tillamook County Sheriff Refuses to Enforce Mask Mandate
“My deputies will not be treating people like criminals if they choose to not wear a mask”

The Tillamook County Sheriff's Office has released a statement indicating they will not be enforcing Oregon Governor Kate Brown's recent demands that everyone in the State of Oregon should wear a mask both indoors and outdoors, regardless of Covid vaccination status:

To whom it may concern,

With the recent surge in Covid hospitalizations, I have been receiving inquires from the media and public regarding enforcement of the Governor’s mask mandate. The simple answer to that question is that the Tillamook County Sheriff’s Office will not be enforcing any mask mandate. I could easily fall back on the adage that we just don’t have the personnel to accomplish this daunting task - which is true - but that would not represent the entirety of the reason for my decision.

The fact is, I don’t believe it is the role of the Sheriff’s Office to enforce what is essentially an Oregon Health Authority directive, not a criminal one. TCSO is not the enforcement arm for OHA and my deputies will not be treating people like criminals if they choose to not wear a mask.

I believe that there is a certain amount of personal responsibility that each of us has and lately seems to be forgotten. If you are not feeling well, whether you suspect its Covid, the flu, the common cold or any other communicable disease, please contact your healthcare provider and consider staying home. Please, don’t go to work, shopping or to a function or event when you are sick. This is what I hope people were doing before Covid, and what we will do after. If you are concerned that an event or activity could potentially be a “spreader” event, then don’t attend it.

A simple remedy for the customer who finds themselves in a business that is making a choice different to their own beliefs in a way that makes them uncomfortable is to simply leave and not frequent that business any longer. If a customer is not complying with the wishes of a business, a representative from that business can ask the customer to comply or leave the premises. If the customer doesn’t comply with that request, then the business should contact law enforcement.

While we will not be enforcing the mask mandate, we will be enforcing crimes such as Harassment and Trespass. If a customer in a business located within the county refuses to leave an establishment after being asked to do so, or there is a physical altercation with another person, Deputies will respond and investigate as they do for other suspected criminal activity.

I hope this clears up any questions regarding this issue. Please stay safe.

Joshua Brown

Tillamook County Sheriff


--Staff Reports

Post Date: 2021-08-27 19:53:51Last Update: 2021-08-28 03:17:05



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