Members of the U.S. National Guard in D.C. on June 7. Photo: Olivier Douliery/AFP via Getty Images
Members of the District of Columbia National Guard that responded to protests over the death of George Floyd have tested positive for the coronavirus, a National Guard spokesperson confirmed to McClatchy DC on Tuesday.
The big picture: 1,300 D.C. National Guard members were ordered to the district as the nation's capital was rocked by violent protests on May 31 that have since turned largely peaceful. A Guard spokesperson did not disclose how many positive tests the unit has recorded.
What they're saying: “We can confirm that we have had COVID-19 positive tests with the DCNG,” said D.C. National Guard spokesperson Air Force Lt. Col. Brooke Davis, according to McClatchy.
- "The safety and security of our personnel is always a concern, especially in light of the COVID-19 era."
By the numbers: The D.C. National Guard was supported by approximately 3,900 additional National Guardsmen from Florida, Idaho, Indiana, Maryland, Missouri, Mississippi, New Jersey, Ohio, South Carolina, Tennessee and Utah.
What to watch: Almost all National Guard units are expected to leave the city by Wednesday, but members who have tested positive for the coronavirus will be held back until they are no longer sick or contagious.
- Many health officials, including Anthony Fauci, fear that the Floyd protests could result in new coronavirus outbreaks due to the close proximity of demonstrators and law enforcement officials.
Go deeper: Protesters fear the spread of coronavirus