Ohio will send 185 members of its National Guard to the U.S.–Mexico border, Gov. Mike DeWine said on Friday.
The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and the National Guard Bureau (NGB) had requested the activation of more members of the Ohio National Guard to support the Southwest Border mission, according to a release from DeWine’s office. The Republican governor said that he approved the request.
The 185 members will be deployed later in the year, and will provide non-law enforcement support to assist Customs and Border Protection (CBP) at the border mission. They will join an estimated 3,000 other National Guard members that have been requested from other states to support the mission.
Details about the duties of the guard members were not provided.
The release noted that 115 members from the Ohio National Guard’s 1484th Transportation Company were previously deployed to support the Southwest Border mission, also at the request of the DHS and NGB, and they remain on active duty as of July 2.
The Southwest Border mission, formerly referred to as “Operation Faithful Patriot,” began in October 2018 under the Trump administration and seeks to enhance security along the Mexican border of Texas, New Mexico, Arizona, and California.
The ongoing mission is approved through Sept. 30—the end of fiscal year 2021.
Separately, Republican state governors of South Dakota, Iowa, Florida, Nebraska, and Idaho each recently announced they will deploy law enforcement officers from their respective states to the southern border in response to a call from a June 10 request from Texas Gov. Greg Abbott and Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey for more law enforcement manpower to address the ongoing migrant crisis.
Abbott and Ducey, both Republicans, wrote in their letter, “With your help, we can apprehend more of these perpetrators of state and federal crimes, before they can cause problems in your state.”
The letter asserted that under a mutual agreement between states, the Emergency Management Assistance Compact, any officers that states send to Texas or Arizona will be given “the same power … duties, rights, and privileges as are afforded forces of the state in which they are performing emergency services,” which will “include the power to arrest migrants who illegally cross the border into our territory.”
According to data from U.S. Customs and Border Protection, there were 180,034 apprehensions related to border crossings in May—the largest number in two decades.