Portland — like many cities — is currently confronting issues related to social justice, livability and the COVID-19 pandemic. Amid it all, Portland is a safe place to visit. Read on for detailed answers surrounding safety, protests and visitor experience.
Is It Safe In Portland? Answers to Your Questions
Is Portland Oregon safe to visit?
What is the status of protests in Portland?
While the city occasionally sees small groups engage in disruptive behavior, activity is typically contained away from visitor attractions and areas where most visitors stay and explore. Protests have significantly decreased in recent months, in part due to city efforts to address concerns directly.
The Portland Police Bureau last declared a riot on May 25, 2021, following protests marking the one-year anniversary of George Floyd’s death. The Multnomah County District Attorney is focusing resources on actively prosecuting individuals causing personal harm and real property damage, and the office provides a clear view of policy and a dashboard of case activity.
I recently saw Portland on the news. Can you tell me what happened?
We do not condone violence or vandalism. Portland Mayor Ted Wheeler has proposed more tools for investigating protest-related violence and tougher penalties for people caught engaging in violence and vandalism, which has already resulted in a safer Portland.
What’s it like in downtown Portland right now? Is downtown Portland safe?
As COVID restrictions gradually lift, it is anticipated that workers will gradually return to offices and businesses will increase their hours of operation. Consumer activity downtown is picking up and should continue to rise.
The community has come together in person at various central city events this summer, including shopping at Portland Saturday Market, attending concerts at The Lot at Zidell Yards, and rediscovering culinary gems at Portland Night Market.
Other downtown attractions, including the Portland Saturday Market, Portland Farmers Market at PSU, Oregon Historical Society and Portland Art Museum are open and welcoming visitors.
Beyond protests, is violence on the rise in Portland? How dangerous is Portland?
While gun violence is unpredictable, the city mainly sees issues in concentrated areas away from hotel and tourism centers. Neighborhoods in the outer North and East sections of Portland, areas that have faced greater economic and social hardship historically and because of the pandemic, have reported more incidents. As a result, the city and the Portland Police Bureau are focusing resources on these areas and forging stronger community partnerships to improve the current climate, with an emphasis on providing necessary resources for future improvements as well. In addition, partnerships are developing across city, county, state, federal, community and nonprofit entities to explore and implement viable, sustainable solutions citywide.
How is the city dealing with the rise in houselessness?
Please read Travel Portland’s Homelessness in Portland page for additional information about this issue, as well as more details on proactive measures to address homelessness in the city.
How is Portland addressing police reform?
Additionally, as of January 2021, Mayor Ted Wheeler — with support from the rest of the city council — has stressed police reform, affordable housing and the vivacity of downtown to be the top priorities of his second term in office.
In February 2021, the Portland Business Alliance, Greater Portland’s Chamber of Commerce, shared a holistic roadmap for economic recovery. The plan includes successfully implementing the new voter-approved police accountability measure, which aims to eradicate institutional racism from public safety agencies.
What COVID-19 restrictions are in place in Portland?
It is recommended that you check with individual businesses to determine their respective regulations pertaining to capacity and vaccination requirements.
For more details, please visit Travel Portland’s Visiting Portland During the Pandemic and More COVID-19 Info & Resources pages.
While the vast majority of demonstrations are peaceful, Travel Portland urges visitors to exercise caution and avoid areas where demonstrations are planned.
Homelessness is a real and visible problem in Portland. Learn about the causes, responses and how you can help.
Our round-up of Portland public safety resources will help you stay informed and safe in case of snow, ice, or other incidents.
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