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Oregon Delegation Leads Letter to U.S. Army Concerning COVID-19 Protocol for Oregon National Guardsmen

 


For Immediate Release

December 7, 2020

Contact: Larkin Parker, 202-225-5711

Hank Stern (Wyden) 503-326-7539

Sara Hottman (Merkley) 503-326-3386

Beth Schoenbach (DeFazio) 202-591-6277

Danielle Cohen (Blumenauer) 202-805-4737

Molly Jenkins (Walden)  202-744-7974

Natalie Crofts (Bonamici) 202-754-1649

 

Oregon Delegation Leads Letter to U.S. Army Concerning COVID-19 Protocol for Oregon National Guardsmen 

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, with the support of the Oregon Congressional delegation, Rep. Schrader led a letter to Secretary McCarthy of the U.S. Army on behalf of members of Oregon’s 41st Infantry Brigade. 

Rep. Schrader was alerted by family members of Oregonian soldiers who recently returned from Kosovo and are currently at Ft. Bliss for demobilization that at least 10 soldiers have tested positive for COVID-19 and dozens more are showing concerning symptoms. 

“We must ensure that our brave servicemen and women who put their lives on the line to protect us, are being protected themselves,” wrote the delegation. “Their safety and the safety of their families is of critical importance and we look forward to a swift response from Secretary McCarthy regarding sufficient PPE, testing kits and adequate quarantine protocol for demobilizing soldiers.”

 

Secretary Ryan D. McCarthy

U.S. Department of the Army

1600 Army Pentagon

Washington, DC 20310-1600

 

Dear Secretary McCarthy,

December 3, 2020

We are writing on behalf of members of Oregon’s 41st Infantry Brigade who recently returned from Kosovo to Ft. Bliss for demobilization before returning home to Oregon. Our offices have learned that among the recently returned members, at least 10 soldiers have tested positive for coronavirus with dozens more showing symptoms consistent with coronavirus. Our concern for the health and wellbeing of the soldiers and their families is of the utmost priority as they reintegrate back into their communities, and to that end, we have questions as to their care at Ft. Bliss:

  • What is the Department of the Army testing and quarantine protocol for these soldiers upon returning stateside and having positive cases in their unit, including protocol and plan for living quarters during observation and quarantine?
  • Does the Department of the Army have sufficient test kits, PPE, and personnel to test, trace, monitor and treat each soldier currently demobilizing with Oregon’s 41st Infantry Brigade at Ft. Bliss? If not, what is the plan to address shortages and is there assistance needed to do so? If not, what is the plan to address shortages and is there assistance needed to do so?

Thank you for your prompt attention to our questions and we are looking forward to your expedient response

Sincerely,

KURT SCHRADER Member of Congress

JEFFREY A. MERKLEY U.S. Senator

RON WYDEN U.S. Senator

PETER DeFAZIO Member of Congress

EARL BLUMENAUER Member of Congress

GREG WALDEN Member of Congress

SUZANNE BONAMICI Member of Congress

 

 

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