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Governor Abbott Activates National Guard In Response To COVID-19

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AUSTIN, TX – Governor Greg Abbott today activated the Texas National Guard to be prepared to assist with response efforts for COVID-19.

This preparative measure will ensure that the Texas National Guard can assist in various forms throughout the state when needed. Healthcare workers and first responders who are members of the Texas National Guard are excluded from this activation so that they can continue serving the people of Texas in their respective fields.  

“By activating the Texas National Guard, we are ensuring Texas is prepared as we continue to mitigate the spread of COVID-19,” said Governor Abbott. “I am grateful to the men and women of the National Guard for their dedication to serving their fellow Texans, and want to assure the public that this is a precautionary measure to make sure the Texas National Guard has the capability to serve at a moment’s notice where they are needed most.”

Abbott made the announcement at the State Operations Center in Austin, at the start of a video conference with Texas hospitals.

Abbott said as of today, Texas is up to 64 confirmed cases of coronavirus across 19 counties. He also mentioned the state’s first coronavirus-related death, involving a man in his 90s in Matagorda County. 

“As of this moment,” Abbott said, “1,264 Texans have been tested. That number will continue to increase dramatically,” he added. 

Abbott reiterated that he’s confident Texas will be able to test 10,000 people per week by the end of this week. 

‘To make sure that we in the state of Texas are taking every step possible to make sure that we’re going to be capable of responding to what is going on, I am at this moment activating the Texas National Guard to assist in our response to COVID-19. … The National Guard has been involved in this process from the beginning. It’s just that at this particular point, I want to fully activate the National Guard, but no National Guard need to be deployed at this time. We just want to make sure that we activated them, they know that they’re gonna be activated, the general of the National Guard, Gen. Norris, can be in charge of getting them ready. We do want to exempt from anybody who may be called up first responders or anybody involved in the health-care profession because they need to be on the front lines making sure that we are providing all the health care that is needed for those who may contract COVID-19.’

Source: Office of Governor Greg Abbott

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