Press Releases

February 02, 2022

Wyden on Reintroduction of the EARN IT Act: Political Attacks on Encryption Will Make Children Less Safe, Won’t Aid Victims or Catch Predators Who Prey On Kids

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senator Ron Wyden, D-Ore., urged his colleagues to listen to human rights leaders, press freedom advocates and the broad coalition of civil society groups that opposed the EARN IT Act of 2020, following the reintroduction of the bill. "This sadly misguided bill will not protect children. It will not stop the spread of vile child exploitation material or target the monsters that produce it. And it does not spend a single dollar to invest in prevention services for … Continue Reading


February 02, 2022

Wyden, Merkley: Confederated Tribes of Siletz Indians Earn $500,000 in Federal Broadband Funds

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senators Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley today announced that the Confederated Tribes of Siletz Indians have earned $500,000 in federal funds for work on planning activities for broadband infrastructure connection, construction, and service deployment. "Tribes in Oregon and nationwide need modern and reliable broadband connections so that schoolchildren can learn, small businesses can buy and sell goods, and everybody can have access to tele-health," Wyden said. "I'm … Continue Reading


January 27, 2022

Wyden, Merkley: Mercy Foundation to Receive $375,768 Federal Telehealth Grant for Rural Schools in Roseburg

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senators Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley this week announced that Mercy Foundation in Roseburg will receive $375,768 from the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to expand telehealth services for rural schools. "The pandemic has forced us to find different ways to deliver health care services safely and efficiently, including through broadband," Wyden said. "When I visited Mercy Medical in Roseburg last week, they made it clear to me that quality health care should be … Continue Reading


January 27, 2022

Wyden, Merkley Call for IRS to Provide Penalty Relief for Taxpayers as IRS Faces Extensive Processing Backlogs

Washington, D.C. -U.S. Senators Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley this week joined colleagues to call on the U.S. Department of the Treasury and the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) to provide penalty relief for taxpayers in Oregon and nationwide amid extensive, ongoing processing backlogs at the IRS. "While the COVID-19 pandemic has strained every federal agency, the impact on the IRS has been particularly severe," Wyden, Merkley and the lawmakers wrote Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen and IRS … Continue Reading


January 27, 2022

Senators Wyden and Moran Welcome DNI’s Recognition that the U.S. Must Fix the Broken Declassification System

Washington, D.C. - Senators Ron Wyden, D-Ore., and Jerry Moran, R-Kan., welcomed Director of National Intelligence Avril Haines' acknowledgement that the U.S. declassification system is failing and in need of urgent repair, in response to their request that she take swift and meaningful actions to reform the country's broken declassification system. In her response, Director Haines acknowledged the serious dangers posed by the current system while noting that necessary reform efforts have not … Continue Reading


January 27, 2022

Wyden, Merkley: More than $1.2 Million to Oregon Office of State Fire Marshal for Service during 2020 Riverside Fire

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senators Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley this week announced that Oregon will receive $1.23 million in federal reimbursement from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) for emergency protective measures in extreme fire conditions and hazardous debris removal from the Riverside Fire that ripped through Clackamas County in September 2020. "The Oregon State Fire Marshal went above and beyond the call of duty to protect communities during the catastrophic fires in … Continue Reading


January 26, 2022

Wyden Releases Statement on the Retirement of Supreme Court Justice Stephen Breyer

Washington, D.C. - Sen. Ron Wyden, D-Ore., issued the following statement on the retirement of Supreme Court Justice Stephen Breyer. "Justice Stephen Breyer has served with distinction for nearly 30 years. I thank him for his service and his commitment to upholding the rule of law and the Constitution. President Biden's nominee to the Supreme Court will be put forward at a critical time. The six Republicans on the Supreme Court are running roughshod over the rights of all Americans, … Continue Reading


January 24, 2022

Wyden, Merkley: $4.5 Million to Oregon Health Care Providers for Relief for Health Care Workers

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senators Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley said today that Oregon health care providers in Portland and Northeast Oregon will receive a combined total of $4.5 million from the American Rescue Plan to improve retention and reduce burnout during a critical staffing shortage. "Oregon health care workers all over the state have shared heartbreaking and harrowing accounts of long hours and few breaks while Oregonians fill their hospitals," Wyden said. "Caring for health care … Continue Reading


January 22, 2022

Wyden statement on the 49th Anniversary of Roe v. Wade

Senate Finance Committee Chair Ron Wyden, D-Ore., today released the following statement on the 49th anniversary of the decision of Roe v. Wade, which has protected reproductive rights and access for millions of Americans. "Thanks to Roe v. Wade, access to safe and legal abortion has been a constitutional right for nearly half a century. Despite this essential advancement for reproductive health, rights and justice, Republican lawmakers will stop at nothing to gut access to safe and legal … Continue Reading


January 21, 2022

Wyden, Merkley Urge Forest Service to Support Another Long-term Stewardship Contract on the Malheur National Forest

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senators Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley today urged the United States Forest Service to support another long-term stewardship contract on the Malheur National Forest. A new contract would build on the current contract's proven successes, including saving the last mill in Grant County restoring wildlife habitat, and reducing wildfire risks to communities in both Grant and Harney counties. Wyden and Merkley noted in their letter to Glenn Casamassa, Regional Forester, Region … Continue Reading


January 21, 2022

Wyden, Merkley Applaud President Biden for Distributing Free Masks; Urge Federal Officials to Prioritize Purchase & Distribution of American-Made Masks

Washington, D.C. - Oregon's U.S. Senators Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley this week joined Senate colleagues to urge President Joe Biden and congressional officials to prioritize the purchase of masks made in the U.S. with U.S. materials. "Purchasing NIOSH approved N95 respirators and other high-quality masks, such as FDA-authorized surgical masks, made by American workers here in the U.S. advances our shared goals for supporting domestic manufacturing and ensuring a more reliable, consistent … Continue Reading


January 20, 2022

Wyden, Merkley Welcome Three AmeriCorps Civilian Community Corps Teams to Oregon

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senators Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley this week welcomed three AmeriCorps National Civilian Community Corps (NCCC) teams working to maintain and recover Oregon's natural treasures. "AmeriCorps NCCC volunteers do an incredible service building communities back after disaster and keeping green spaces healthy," Wyden said. "These programs in Eugene, Williams, and Stayton will make a measurable difference in the future of our state's natural treasures, and I thank these … Continue Reading


January 20, 2022

Wyden and Lummis Introduce Bipartisan Bill to Protect Attorney-Client Privilege In the Digital Age

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senator Ron Wyden, D-Ore., and Senator Cynthia Lummis, R-Wyo., today introduced the Effective Assistance of Counsel in the Digital Era Act, to protect the confidentiality of email communications between incarcerated individuals and their attorneys. Although mail, phone calls and in-person meetings at federal prisons are currently protected against government surveillance, inmates at Bureau of Prison facilities must allow the government to review all attorney-client … Continue Reading


January 20, 2022

Wyden Announces Re-scheduled Online Town Halls in Clackamas, Crook and Jefferson counties

Portland - U.S. Sen. Ron Wyden today announced he will have three live on-line town halls hosted by People's Town Hall from Jan. 25-27 for residents of Clackamas, Crook and Jefferson counties These three virtual town halls had originally been scheduled for Jan. 18-20 but had to be rescheduled because of the U.S. Senate schedule. Wyden has held 970 in-person town halls statewide in fulfillment of his pledge to hold at least one town hall each year in each of Oregon's 36 counties. After these … Continue Reading


January 19, 2022

Wyden, Merkley: More than $2.4 Million to Oregon for Service during 2020 South Obenchain & Almeda Fires

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senators Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley this week announced that Oregon will receive $2.48 million in federal reimbursement for fire response and hazardous debris removal from the South Obenchain and Almeda fires that tore through southern Oregon in 2020. "Southern Oregon has made incredible progress recovering from these catastrophic fires, but these efforts have been challenging and expensive," Wyden said. "As we anticipate more and more challenging wildfire seasons to … Continue Reading


January 14, 2022

Wyden, Merkley Call on FDA to Change Discriminatory Blood Donation Policies to Address National Blood Supply Shortage

Washington, D.C. - Oregon's U.S. Senators Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley this week joined colleagues to call on federal officials to act on the most up to date science and update its discriminatory blood donor deferral policies for men who have sex with men (MSM). With the Red Cross declaring its first-ever national blood shortage that is posing risks to patient care, with as much as one-quarter of hospital blood needs not currently being met, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) can take the … Continue Reading


January 13, 2022

Wyden Releases Statement on Obstructionist Nord Stream 2 Legislation

Washington, D.C. - Sen. Ron Wyden, D-Ore., issued the following statement after voting no on obstructionist legislation by Republican Senator Ted Cruz, of Texas, related to the Nord Stream 2 pipeline: "Senator Cruz had an opportunity to come up with serious legislation dealing with Nord Stream 2, but instead he wrote a bill that would hogtie the Senate with procedural votes and obstruct progress on all the other issues that matter to American families. This is the latest example in a pattern … Continue Reading


January 12, 2022

Wyden, Merkley Join Colleagues to Introduce Legislation to Give Every American Lifesaving Masks

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senators Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley today joined U.S. Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) and more than 50 Democratic colleagues in the Senate and House to reintroduce lifesaving legislation to manufacture and distribute highly-protective N95 masks to every person in Oregon and nationwide. Under Sanders' Masks for All Act - first introduced in 2020 and developed in consultation with health experts including Andy Slavitt, former COVID-19 advisor to President Biden and the former … Continue Reading


January 12, 2022

Wyden, Colleagues Call on Biden Administration to Make Permanent OSHA’s Emergency Covid-19 Protections for Health Care Workers

Washington, D.C. -As the rise of the Omicron variant continues to threaten the safety of our nation's health care workforce, U.S. Senator Ron Wyden today joined colleagues in a letter calling on the Biden administration to continue and make permanent the Occupational Safety and Health Administration's (OSHA) emergency COVID-19 protections for health care workers in Oregon and nationwide. "We are writing to urge you to move forward with a permanent, enforceable standard that would … Continue Reading


January 11, 2022

Wyden, Merkley: More than $3.6 Million for Fire Suppression Efforts during White River Fire

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senators Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley this week announced that more than $3.6 million from the Federal Emergency Management Administration (FEMA) will go toward recovery from the White River Fire that burned in the Mt. Hood National Forest in August 2020. "The White River Fire demonstrated how quickly wildfire can spread with a changing climate causing high winds and drought," Wyden said. "Wildfire season is starting earlier, lasting longer and destroying more of our … Continue Reading

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