Over 100 National Guard Troops Contract COVID After Sleeping In Parking Garage
Coronavirus cases among troops soar after sleeping in sub-zero temperatures
Over 100 members of the National Guard have tested positive for the coronavirus after they slept in near-freezing temperatures "packed... together like sardines" in parking garages of the Capitol building.
The news caused outrage earlier this week as photos of the living conditions the National Guard troops were enduring emerged on Thursday night, just a day after Joe Biden was sworn in as the nation’s 46th president.
The news outlet also noted that the less-than-ideal conditions in Washington, D.C., risk the virus's rampant spread.
And if you want to use the bathroom, well pic.twitter.com/YXLawaqA0Q— Alex Horton (@AlexHortonTX) January 22, 2021
One National Guardsmen told Politico earlier this week:
“Yesterday dozens of senators and congressmen walked down our lines taking photos, shaking our hands and thanking us for our service."
“Within 24 hours, they had no further use for us and banished us to the corner of a parking garage."
"We feel incredibly betrayed.”
A source close to security discussions at the Capitol said House Speaker Nancy Pelosi "personally met with the Secretary of the Army to demand 14,000 National Guard troops be deployed to the Capitol."
Around 25,000 National Guard forces were sent to assist federal law enforcement authorities in Washington, DC, for Joe Biden's inauguration.
MILITARY SOURCE IN DC:— Benny (@bennyjohnson) January 22, 2021
“For the last week my battalion has been sleeping on the floor in the Senate cafeteria. Today the Senate kicked us out & moved us to a cold parking garage.
1 power outlet.
This is how Joe Biden’s America treats soldiers.”
On Thursday, the National Guard said that 15,000 National Guardsmen would be sent home in a press release.
Sen. Tom Cotton vowed to get "to get to the bottom of this."
We’ll get to the bottom of this and get it fixed. Congress is in session, but buildings are still closed to public, so there’s plenty of room for troops to take a break in them. https://t.co/H9CfOtJAW9— Tom Cotton (@SenTomCotton) January 22, 2021
There are 10,600 who are still on duty, but that number will go down to 7,000 near the end of the month.