In the days since the horrific shootings at military centers in Chattanooga, where five servicemen lost their lives, governors across the country have issued orders to arm National Guard military personal at recruiting stations and other “soft targets.” Yesterday, Governor Doug Ducey added Arizona to a list that already includes Florida, Indiana, Arkansas, Oklahoma, Louisiana, Texas and Wisconsin by issuing an executive order allowing for the arming of the Arizona National guard in public places.
The Arizona Capitol Times reports:
Press aide Daniel Scarpinato said Ducey’s action, similar to what has been done by several other governors, is justified.
“Given the incidents we’ve seen, most recently in Chattanooga, the governor believes we need to make the safety and security of our Guard personnel a huge priority,” he said.
“We need to assure them that they’re safe and make sure they have the tools to remain safe,” Scarpinato continued. “And so this policy, which was developed in close consultation with the National Guard, will allow them to protect themselves and not be vulnerable.”
Arizona National Guard members will be issued arms, but unlike some states, Ducey has authorized soldiers to also bring their personal weapons for protection pending certain training and logistical considerations.
While the events in Chattanooga are still under investigation, a consensus that changes are needed to the security procedures and policies for military recruiting centers has formed. With this order, Governor Ducey has moved Arizona toward that end.