Do What You Can Do

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Senator Jeff Golden

 *  “I am only one, but still I am one. I cannot do everything, but still I can do something; And because I cannot do everything I will not refuse to do the something that I can do.”  —Helen Keller

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We’ve enjoyed your recent photos of beautiful Southern Oregon so much that we want to share more. This photo was provided by Cynthia L Barnard. Have a photo you've taken and want to share with us? Send it to with the subject “Photo Reminder.” We’ll use some in future newsletters.

Keeping Current on COVID-19

            Phase 1 of Reopening Oregon is in its second week. Most people returning to businesses and public spaces are respecting the guidelines on hygiene, masking and distancing. But some aren’t. My inbox gets the full range of opinion, from deep concern about the economic impacts of cautious re-opening to strident calls to resist this “assault on our liberties” to biting criticism of those strident calls. Like this one:


The mixed email opinion is matched by mixed results from our first 12 days of re-opening. We don’t have a Second Wave on our hands, but the trend line for new cases is tilting up. After nearly no increase in Jackson County from May 1-15, the total Covid case count has increased from 50 to 65 since May 15; the county still has no reported deaths from the virus. That means we don’t yet have a clear picture to predict when we can move into Phase II, which will ease travel restrictions and increase the number of people who can gather together at one time (the current Phase I limit is 24 people).

How have trends been going outside of our valley? This article puts together the national picture as of yesterday.


While it’s not much comfort for the people who’ve waited many weeks for service, the state seems to be catching up on the huge backlog of unemployment claims. If you’ve heard nothing helpful on your case after several weeks, or can’t find a human being after hours on the phone or computer, contact me at . Besides your name, please include the date you applied and any confirmation number you received from earlier interactions. Let’s see if we can get all the way caught up.

If you have already applied for Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA), which is different from traditional unemployment eligibility, by mail or fax, it’s likely that you did not receive an automatically generated notice in the mail, which contains customer ID information. If this is your situation, you can use your social security number to file weekly claims rather than using your customer ID number. If you have not yet applied for PUA and would like to, visit this link to file through the online system.

I know there are also many questions surrounding PUA, and I have found this Frequently Asked Questions document from the Employment Department to be very useful.

Keep taking care of yourself and others—


Senator Jeff Golden, Oregon Senate District 3

Important Updates

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  • Today, May 28th from 9am-4pm, PPE will be distributed free of charge to Jackson County agricultural producers and farmworkers. No documentation is required to qualify. You can find more details and the address of the event at this link.

  • As Jackson County continues in Phase 1 of reopening, many are navigating questions about what activities are safe. This article provides information about activities and their relative safety during this time.

  • The state's general information site is a useful tool during this time. For most current information statewide, visit this link. For more detailed information, visit this link.

  • Starting June 9, most campgrounds will be offering first-come first-serve camping for a maximum stay of 14 days. Please be responsible while visiting these outdoor areas and continue to social distance while out. For answers to frequently asked questions, utilize this link.  For updates about Jackson County Parks, visit this link.

Resources for Current Information

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Other Resources

Business Resources:

  • Senator Merkley's office has put together an excellent summary of the resources made available through the federal coronavirus relief packages with tips and advice about how access that aid. Click here to view.

  • USDA has a Rural Development COVID-19 resource page with information about Rural Development loan payment assistance, application deadline extensions, and more, including in Spanish.

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Social Services:

  • Governor Brown has outlined final guidelines for childcare facilities. If childcare facilities meet the guidelines, they have been authorized to open as of May 15th.

  • The National Alliance on Mental Illness has a helpline if you are struggling with mental illness in this stressful time, as well as many support groups of all kinds. The helpline is available from 9 AM to 5 PM at 503-230-8009, or toll-free at 800-343-6264. Visit their website here to find out more.

  • SEIU has put together a really valuable page with resources for unemployment insurance, the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (Food stamps), the Oregon Health Plan or other health care coverage, child care, and housing services. Check it out.

  • The Governor has created a Coronavirus FAQ for immigrants and refugees in a variety of languages. You can find it by clicking here.

  • Oregon Recovers has put together a list of resources for those struggling with addiction.
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Meals for All: 

For Parents and Students:

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Capitol Phone: 503-986-1703
Capitol Address: 900 Court St NE, S-421, Salem, OR, 97301
Podcast: Capitolizing