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Dear Friends and Neighbors,
 

Here is your update on what has been going on at the Capitol. You’ll also find my statement on Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month; the latest COVID-19 information, including advice on how to avoid vaccine scams; information for our next bi-weekly Virtual Coffee; and new “office hours” that I will be hosting.

 
 
Asian American & Pacific Islander Heritage Month

Happy Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month! ** I hope this yearly month of celebration will inspire each of us to learn more about the history and influences of Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) populations in the US and Oregon. Please join me in lifting up these critical members of our community with the embrace of your support and interest. House District 33 (NW Portland and NE Washington County) has one of the largest populations of Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders in the state and I am proud to represent you all. I know this pandemic has brought with it incredible challenges and loss to all of us and the AAPI community has seen a dramatic increase in acts of overt hate, resulting in trauma and marginalization. Please help us come together by standing against this hate. I hope we will all be spending more time together outdoors as restrictions lighten and the weather improves, learning about each other and celebrating the various cultures and contributions of the Asian American and Pacific Islander, together, in our community. 

**Asian refers to those having origin in countries located on the Asian continent. Pacific Islanders have ethnic roots in Polynesia, Micronesia, and/or Melanesia. The following is a non-exhaustive list of Pacific Islands for reference: Polynesia includes Samoa, Hawaii, American Samoa, Tahiti, Tokelau, and Tonga. Micronesia includes Guam, Saipan, Mariana Islands, Marshall Islands, Palau, Yap, Chuuk, Kosrae, Pohnpei, and Kiribati. Melanesia includes Fiji, Papua New Guinea, Solomon Islands, and Vanuatu.

Bill Updates

As of April 28 the House has passed 251 bills with the overwhelming majority of bills passing with bipartisan support. While tensions can of course rise, I am very proud of the packages of bills we have sent over to the Senate and Governor.

HB 3037 is a bill my office has been working on alongside Multnomah County to help inform and support a community after a youth dies by suicide. The bill had a well-received public hearing on 4/20 in the Senate Committee Human Services, Mental Health and Recovery, and it is now in line for a work session once the Senate has the capacity. I’m very grateful to co-chief sponsor Senator Kate Lieber for her partnership in championing this bill in the Senate. 

HB 2814 (Clean Construction to protect air quality), HB 3035 (Prison healthcare improvement pilot project at Coffee Creek women’s prison), and HB 3039 (Electronic medical record modernization study) are currently in the Joint Ways and Means Committee waiting to go through the budget process. We hope to have more updates in the coming weeks.

Bills of interest that have passed in the House since last update

  • HB 2622 - Rep Schouten

    • Requires hospitals and ambulatory surgical centers to use smoke evacuation system during surgical procedures likely to generate surgical smoke.

  • HB 2958 - Rep Nosse

    • Allows pharmacists to prescribe, dispense, and administer PrEP and PEP.

  • HB 2969 - Rep Nosse and Rep Hayden

    • Directs school districts to provide age-appropriate instruction in oral health as part of health education curriculum.

  • HB 2935 (The CROWN Act) - Rep Bynum

    • Prohibits discrimination on race-based hairstyles in the workplace or school

  • HB 3110 - Rep Power

    • Requires the board of directors of publicly traded corporations to have at least  one female director and a director who is a member of an underrepresented community.

  • SB 554 - Senator Burdick

    • Requires gun owners to securely store their weapons when not in use, and will ban possession of guns in the state Capitol and Portland International Airport. It paves the way for public schools and universities to enact their own bans

Rep Dexter testifies on the House floor in support of HB 3110
COVID-19 Subcommittee

On 5/5 the subcommittee received our weekly briefing on the vaccine rollout, variant testing and tracing efforts from Oregon Health Authority Director Pat Allen. The subcommittee also heard from public and private high education institutions as well as from students about plans for safely opening campuses in the fall. You can watch the full update here.

Biweekly Constituent Conversations Update

It is a priority for me to continue holding these events on a regular basis despite being back to work in the clinic and hospital. I ask for your understanding as the timing of these events may change based on my work schedule.

My next Constituent Conversation will be on Saturday, May 15 at 9am. These events will be posted on Facebook and YouTube afterwards for the benefit of those who can’t join us live. You can RSVP with the link below or watch live on my Facebook page the day of.

RSVP Here
Open Office Hours

I am excited to announce that starting Tuesday, May 11, I will be holding weekly constituent office hours every Tuesday from 5:30 pm - 6:30 pm. This is nothing too fancy or formal. Feel free to come for one, come for all, pop in for a few minutes just to say “hello” or stay for a while. This is the closest way we can emulate having you all come down to my office in the Capitol.

To help prevent Zoombombers, I do ask that you register with the button below. After your first registration, though, you can just save the Zoom login because it will work every week. Please feel free to share that registration link with your neighbors who may not be on this email list.

Register for Office Hours
COVID Update

COVID cases have recently been dramatically up and now appear to be plateauing to even declining. There continues to be a concern that we may see further case increases with variants present as we open up our communities. Nevertheless, Oregon’s case rate is the twelfth-lowest in the nation, which is a sign that all the work Oregonians have done - to get vaccinated and continue to wear masks (or even double masking), stay socially distant, and remain at home as much as possible - has been working. As more of us are vaccinated and the rates go down it will become safer to open up further. Please continue to practice these safety protocols as long as needed, as we aren’t done with this yet. Please make sure you and your loved ones get your vaccines as soon as you are eligible, especially those who are 65 years and over.

Vaccines Eligibility Expansion

 

 

On 4/6, Governor Brown announced an update to the vaccine eligibility timeline. Since 4/19, all Oregonians 16 and older are eligible to receive a COVID-19 vaccine.

Walk In and Drive-Up Vaccinations

As of today, Friday, the Oregon Convention Center offers walk-in vaccinations, no appointment needed. The Convention Center vaccination clinic will be open from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Friday and closed over the weekend so staff and volunteers can celebrate Mother’s Day. Starting next week, normal hours resume. Noon to 7 p.m. Sunday through Tuesday and 7 a.m. to 2 p.m. Wednesdays and Thursdays.

The Convention Center still recommends making an appointment online to speed up the process. You can still sign-up for an appointment at the Oregon Convention Center directly through the All4Oregon website here.

Additionally, Walmart pharmacies are also administering vaccines via both walk-in and scheduled appointments. Pharmacy locations and appointments can be made here walmart.com/COVIDvaccine. Walmart Pharmacies are open seven days a week.

If you would rather stay in your car, The Nike Headquarters in Beaverton has also been hosting weekly drive-thru vaccination clinics alongside Tualatin Valley Fire and Rescue. I am happy to see Oregon businesses like Nike pitching in to help get Oregon vaccinated. For more info about the Nike drive-thru clinic, click here.

The OHSU mass vaccination site at the Portland airport is also offering "drive-up" vaccinations this weekend, with no appointment necessary. You can simply show up at the PDX Airport Red Economy Parking Lot between 11 a.m. and 3 p.m. on Saturday or 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Sunday to receive your shot.

You can also schedule an appointment at an OHSU vaccination site online here.

Those who need extra help can call 833-647-8222.

To get more information you can call 211, email ORCOVID@211info.org, or text ORCOVID to 898211. Costco Pharmacies,Safeway/Albertsons Pharmacies, Walgreens, CVS, Rite Aid, Walmart, Bi-Mart, and OHSU also have direct vaccine appointment tools.

The Oregon Health Authority does not require an ID to receive a vaccine and the vaccine will be free. However, if you do have insurance, it is recommended that you bring your insurance information, as providers may charge your insurance an administration fee. You should not pay out of pocket for your vaccine.

If you experience side effects after you receive the vaccine, the CDC recommends using their V-safe website to report that information. The most common side effects are tenderness around the injection site, headaches, tiredness, and chills. The website will also remind you when it is time to receive the second dose of the vaccine.

We are now seeing the supply of vaccines outpacing demand so it is much easier to get a jab!

Six Tips on How to Spot a Vaccine Scam
  1. You cannot pay to get early access to the vaccine. If someone calls to “sell you” an earlier appointment than you could get otherwise, it is a scam.

  2. When you are eligible, do not pay to sign up for the COVID-19 vaccine. Anyone who wants money to put you on a list, make an appointment for you, or reserve a spot in line is a scammer.

  3. Worried about cost? If you are uninsured, on Medicare or an employer plan, private insurance, or the Oregon Health Plan, you do not have to pay to get the vaccine. That is a scam.

  4. Ignore sales ads for the vaccine. The vaccine is only available through federal or state partners. You cannot buy it anywhere.

  5. Nobody legitimate will call, text, or email about the vaccine and ask for your Social Security number, bank account information, or credit card number.

  6. You are not required to provide a Social Security number when registering for a vaccine appointment.

For more information about the COVID-19 vaccines, visit COVIDVaccine.oregon.gov. To download the “How to Spot a COVID-19 Vaccine Scam,” visit www.oregonconsumer.gov  and click on COVID-19 Scams.

COVID Risk Levels Update

In December, Governor Brown, alongside the Oregon Health Authority, introduced a new county-level approach to easing COVID restrictions based on a county’s risk level. In April, Governor Brown modified this approach: to be categorized as Extreme Risk, counties must have COVID-19 hospitalization rates of 15% or greater and 300 or more ICU beds occupied by COVID-19 patients. As of 5/4, both Washington and Multnomah County have moved back down to high risk from extreme risk. Here, you can see your county’s risk level and what the guidance is for activities under that risk level.

 
OCF K-12 Summer Learning Grant Programs

The Oregon Community Foundation (OCF) is administering two grant programs with state dollars allocated during 2020. $40 million will be used for K-12 summer learning grants to support enrichment programs for learning outside of the classroom as well as arts, sports, mentoring, workforce development, science, museum education and many other indoor and outdoor activities. More information to apply for this grant can be found here.

OCF will also be administering $1.2 million in early childhood (birth - 5) summer support grants to help deliver 12 weeks of parent-child summer programming including group classes and activities that offer social and learning opportunities for young children and their parents, play groups, and kindergarten readiness programs. More information to apply for this grant can be found here

Landlord Compensation Fund

Are you a landlord with past due rental payments? The Landlord Compensation Fund can help! The program covers 80% of past due rent (April 2020 – now) for tenants with a signed declaration of financial hardship if their landlord agrees to forgive the other 20%. The first round will cover rental debt for approximately 12,000 tenants and has already helped more than 1,900 landlords. More relief resources are available now!

Round two is now open. Please note this program is not first-come, first serve, and applications will be open until May 17th. If you are interested in applying in the second round, please see this check list. You can also visit the Landlord Compensation Fund website for more information.

The Landlord Compensation Fund is not the only rental assistance program currently open. Renters can access assistance through regional community action agencies. Additionally, OHCS will open the new federal Emergency Rental Assistance program next month. Please be on the lookout for additional housing resources in the coming weeks!

 
 
DMV Update

As of May 5th, the DMV2U.Oregon.gov website will be updated to allow individuals to renew drivers’ licenses, standard commercial driver licenses (but not endorsements like hazmat or farm), ID cards, instruction permits, motorcycle instruction permits, restricted moped-only licenses, and disability golf cart driver permits online.

You will be able to renew online if your card is within 12 months of its expiration, your previous renewal was done in person, and you are not currently suspended or still owe a reinstatement fee from a previous suspension. When you do an online renewal, you will be able to change your address if you have moved, and you can also modify your organ donation status. 

Stay in Touch!

The best way to stay informed and connect with my legislative work is through my Facebook page (State Representative Maxine Dexter), my Twitter account (@RepDexterOR), and my Instagram (@RepDexterOR). In addition, please feel free to reach out to my office at Rep.MaxineDexter@OregonLegislature.gov.

I am honored to represent you in Salem and look forward to continuing to serve you and this amazing community we share.

Gratefully,

 

Maxine Dexter, MD
Oregon State Representative
House District 33

Resources
  • Congressman Earl Blumenauer’s office has compiled an exhaustive list of COVID resources here.
  • National Suicide Prevention Hotline | 1-800-273-TALK (8255)- Crisis Text Line | Text HOME to 741741

  • Oregon Youthline | Call 877-968-8491 or text teen2teen to 839863 between 4pm - 10pm to text with another teen.

  • National Youth Crisis Hotline | 1-800-442-HOPE (4673)

  • Oregon Partnership 24 Hour Youth Helpline | 1-877-553-TEEN (8336)

  • NAMI Oregon | 503-230-8009 or 800-343-6264, email namioregon@namior.org - Live support from 9am - 5pm, M-F.

  • The Trevor Project | 1-866-488-7386 - 24/7 suicide prevention for LGBTQ.

  • Senior Loneliness Line | 503-200-1633 or 800-282-7035 - For Oregonians 55+ years old. Get ongoing support, resources, and listening sessions.

  • Veteran Crisis Line | 1-800-273-8255 - Call, chat, or text options, with deaf and hard of hearing support available.
     
  • Virtual Learning Assistance for Washington County Library members. (English resources) (Spanish Resources
  • Housing assistance: Family Promise of Beaverton is committed to helping children and their families affected by homelessness in the Beaverton area. (https://www.familypromiseofbeaverton.org/#homepage

  • Housing assistance: Community Housing Fund focuses on providing affordable housing and works on community projects. (http://www.thecommunityhousingfund.org/?page_id=38#.Xz9P3S2ZNQI)

  • Housing assistance: Community Action helps pay rent and help to get people in need of housing. (https://caowash.org

  • Housing assistance: Salvation Army Female Emergency Shelter serves women in the community who are experiencing homelessness. (https://safes.salvationarmy.org

  • Housing assistance, utility assistance, food assistance: United Way of the Columbia-Willamette provides access to critical services like housing assistance and utility assistance and access to food. (https://www.unitedway-pdx.org)

  • Utility assistance: Oregon Energy Fund is a 30-year-old nonprofit that provides energy bill assistance to low-income Oregonians in support of household stability. (https://www.oregonenergyfund.org/about-us/

  • Utility assistance: Oregon Citizens’ Utility Board provides equitable, affordable, and reliable utility services. (https://oregoncub.org

  • Utility assistance: EnergyTrust helps people save money and energy. (https://www.energytrust.org)

  • Disability assistance: Plan For Work services help individuals with disabilities and provide different services to those in need. (https://www.droregon.org/plan-for-work)  

  • Youth assistance: New Avenues for Youth provides meals, showers, laundry, respite from the streets, engagement activities, and legal counsel. (https://newavenues.org/our-services)

  • Community assistance: Oregon Solutions solves community problems using a problem-solving system. (https://orsolutions.org/about/what-we-do)

  • Transportation assistance: Trimet has a reduced fare for low-income rider and seniors age 65+. (https://trimet.org/fares/honoredcitizen.htm)  

  • Food assistance, water bill assistance, and grants, utility assistance: Care To Share coordinates assistance to families and individuals who seek emergency food and other basic necessities. (http://www.caretosharehelp.org)  

  • Food assistance: Mercy Corps Northwest provides assistance for community members returning from prison. (https://www.mercycorpsnw.org/work/

  • Food assistance, housing assistance, utility assistance, disability assistance: Department of County Human Services ensures that everyone can reach their potential and contribute to communities. (https://multco.us/dchs)

Follow Representative Dexter on social media to stay connected!
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Our Legislative Mailing Address:
900 Court St. NE, H-493
Salem, Oregon 97301
Phone: 503-986-1433
Copyright © 2021 Maxine for Oregon, All rights reserved.


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