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National Guard response to COVID-19

20-008 | March 25, 2020

As of Wednesday morning, more than 10,700 Air and Army National Guard professionals began their day actively supporting COVID-19 response at the direction of their governors. Eight states have approved the use of Dual-Status Commanders, giving them the authority to command active and reserve component troops under control of a state's governor. As a governors’ response to the coronavirus pandemic continues to evolve, so does the Guard response.

“Americans should know the National Guard has their backs throughout this crisis. We’re in this together, and we’ll get through this together," said Gen. Joseph Lengyel, Chief of the National Guard Bureau.

Current National Guard COVID-19 response missions include, but are not limited to:

  • Delivering food in hard-hit communities;
  • Manning call centers to be a knowledgeable and calming voice;
  • Providing critical Personal Protective Equipment training and sample collection and delivery to first responders and hospital personnel;
  • Supporting local emergency management agencies with response planning and execution;
  • Providing support and symptoms screening to testing facilities;
  • Serving as response liaisons and support to state Emergency Operations Centers;
  • Providing transportation and assessment support to healthcare providers;
  • Assisting with disinfecting/cleaning of common public spaces
  • The National Guard has long-standing partnerships with state emergency managers and first responders to help ensure a rapid and unified response.

    If you were going to design an ideal military force to assist with a response like COVID-19, it would the National Guard. We are 450,000 strong in every state, territory, nearly every zip code in the country. Less time and distance = more lives saved.

    The National Guard Bureau (NGB) facilitates integration and synchronization of National Guard support to civil authorities and associated planning between states, the Department of Defense and federal partners. The National Guard's Coordination Center is a 24 / 7 operation working at increased capacity in anticipation of COVID-19 requirements and to ensure unified and rapid response efforts between its state and federal partners.

    The National Guards of the 50 states, three territories and the District of Colombia have a very deep bench of nearly 450,000 experienced and proven Air and Army National Guard professionals. Guard units frequently train side-by-side with state and local emergency responders, making them well-suited for domestic operations.

    National Guard members work and live in every community across the nation and have a proven track record of success supporting civilian authorities after homeland emergencies. The National Guard has unique capabilities such as its Civil Support Teams and CERFPs that could provide local first responders with additional resources to combat COVID-19.

    For more information regarding this press release, please send an email to the National Guard Bureau Media Operations desk at ng.ncr.ngb-arng.mesg.ngb-media-desk-owner@mail.mil.

    National Guard COVID-19 Response Efforts and State PAO Contact Information

    Florida: The Florida National Guard has 1,493 Guard men and women activated in support of COVID- 19. They are supporting the State’s with Community Based Testing Sites (CBTS), augmentation to airport screening measures, statewide logistics support, coordination, planning and operational mission sets. To date, the FLNG has assisted in the testing of over 4,300 individuals for the COVID-19 virus. The FLNG augmented Orange County CBTS site will conduct limited sampling today and projected to go fully operational tomorrow.

    The Florida National Guard has been asked to augment local law enforcement and airport authorities in application of the Governor's order to conduct screening on passengers inbound from CA, WA, NY and NJ at major airports. These missions will support the Governor's recent travel ban guidance in an attempt to significantly reduce the number of infected individuals entering the State from areas with a high amount of community spread.

    The Florida National Guard has activated our medical professionals, Army Combat Medic Specialists and Air Force Medical Technicians in support of the Florida Department of Health's (DOH) Community Based Testing Sites. Our Guardsmen have reported in and formed Task Force Medical.

    The Florida National Guard has activated Guardsmen to augment the State Logistics Readiness Center (SLRC), the State's Logistics Branch, as well as facilitate statewide logistics needs of the Florida National Guard formations on mission. The FLNG support to the SLRC remains at 24 hour a day operations. The Florida National Guard logistics professionals continue to support the State's Logistics Branch in order to maintain visibility on both State and Federal commodities better enabling FLNG personnel to have required Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) and sampling kits to conduct our mission support.

    The Florida National Guard has activated Guardsmen to augment the State Emergency Operations Center and local emergency management offices across the state.

    Please attribute to 1st Lt. Tahisha Coleman, public affairs officer. She can also be reached at tahisha.j.coleman.mil@mail.mil.

    New York: As of 0800 on March 25, 2020 the New York National Guard has 2,100 personnel on mission across the state.

    This includes members of the New York Army and Air National Guard, the New York Guard (state defense force), and the New York Naval Militia.

    Joint Task Forces are operating on Long Island, New York City, the Hudson Valley, Capital Region, Syracuse and Buffalo to support state and local government.

    The New York National Guard is supporting the administration and setup of FEMA Field Hospitals in support of the State Department of Health and NYC officials at the Jacob Javits Center in Manhattan.

    Soldiers are assisting with the reception and setup of the infrastructure in the convention center's 1.8 million square feet of space. Governor Andrew Cuomo said yesterday that setting up the four 250-bed field hospitals at the site would take about a week to 10 days. The National Guard Soldiers will be supporting the 320 federal staff arriving to operate the site.

    The New York National Guard continues to support six drive-thru testing sites today on Long Island, Staten Island, and the Bronx and in Rockland and Westchester Counties. Testing is done arrange reservations made through the Department of Health based on physician orders.

    New York National Guard personnel are continuing to support food packaging and in New Rochelle. Also in New Rochelle, Soldiers are continuing to clean places of worship in support of the city's cleaning of public spaces. On March 25, they are expected to clean the Beth El Synagogue.

    New York National Guard Soldiers and Airmen are conducting logistics missions in support of the state response at warehouse locations. Hand sanitizer warehousing and deliveries continue across the lower Hudson Valley.

    New York National Guard also continues to provide support the New York State Coronavirus Hotline by working in a call center in Rotterdam, N.Y. to offer updated information to the public. Other Soldiers support a call center mission in New York City.

    Soldiers and Airmen assisted Department of Health officials at the Wadsworth Laboratory in Albany in packaging COVID 19 test kits.

    New York National Guard images continue to go up on NY National Guard Flickr.

    Please attribute to COL Richard Goldenberg, public affairs officer. He can also be reached at richard.l.goldenberg.mil@mail.mil or (518) 786-6150.

    North Carolina: The North Carolina National Guard is currently working on the front lines of this pandemic with our department of public safety team and other state agencies.

    There are currently 61 North Carolina Army and Air Guardsmen supporting the COVID19 response with 17 vehicles in the following areas: Raleigh, Durham, Greensboro, and Mocksville. The 17 vehicles supporting these force packages are: cargo trucks (MTVs) and Humvees. Their missions are to support warehouse and commodity management and distribution in the Raleigh- Durham area and Charlotte area.

    These experienced guardsmen and women have executed this exact mission (warehouse operations and commodities distribution) with emergency management during recent Hurricanes Matthew and Florence.

    The North Carolina National Guard is ready to respond with additional resources and capabilities depending on the needs of the state, and as ordered by the governor.

    North Carolina images can be found at these links:

    Photos Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) Warehouse Operations - Raleigh-Durham area

    NC Air Guard Supports COVID-19 Response
    U.S. Airmen from the 145th Logistics Readiness Squadron, North Carolina Air National Guard, help prepare medical equipment at a warehouse in the Raleigh-Durham area of North Carolina for shipment to various supply centers across the state, March 23, 2020. This equipment will be used in response to COVID-19. (U.S. Army National Guard Photo by Sgt. Jamar Marcel Pugh, 382nd Public Affairs Detachment/Released)

    Video PPE warehouse operations Raleigh-Durham area:

    Please attribute to Lt Col Matthew DeVivo, public affairs officer. He can also be reached at matthew.r.devivo.mil@mail.mil or (984) 664-6244.