Arizona National Guard Adds Logistics Expertise To Coronavirus Response

Published: Friday, March 20, 2020 - 12:05pm
Updated: Friday, March 20, 2020 - 1:51pm
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Howard Fischer/Capitol Media Services
Maj. Gen. Michael McGuire explains the role the Arizona National Guard will play in helping to restock grocery stores whose shelves have been stripped of many items by shoppers hoarding goods. With him is Gov. Doug Ducey and Dr. Cara Christ.

The head of the Arizona National Guard says it has the ability to manage large-scale logistics, deliver things in bulk and get them to the most rural parts of the state.

Gov. Doug Ducey has called up the military force to ensure Arizonans have access to food during the coronavirus pandemic.

The Guard’s most recent emergency response was to Hurricane Harvey in Texas.

Besides border missions, the Guard’s last incident here was Yarnell Hill, said Maj. Gen. Michael McGuire, director of the state’s Department of Emergency and Military Affairs.

Overall, McGuire said Hurricane Katrina was the biggest crisis that he’s seen.

“I don’t know any other time we’ve seen a call on our emergency management system in this way,” he said of the COVID-19 pandemic.

It’s common for National Guards to help each other out, McGuire said. But with Arizona now one of roughly 30 states using these forces most places will have to rely on their own resources.

"I have complete faith and confidence in the great state of Arizona, our citizens, and our nation to endure through this," McGuire said.

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