36 members of the National Guard heading to work in El Paso mortuarie…

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After El Paso resorted to using county jail inmates to move bodies for nearly two weeks, the Texas Army National Guard is sending a 36-person team to assist with mortuary services in the area starting Saturday morning, according to multiple state lawmakers in the region.

The border city has been devastated by the coronavirus for more than a month, with limited beds at its hospitals and makeshift health centers, and refrigerated trucks used as temporary morgues.

“This is very much needed in our community, and we’re really thankful for [the Texas Division of Emergency Management] and the governor’s action on this,” Democratic state Rep. and Sen.-elect César Blanco said Friday.

After county volunteers quickly backed away from the grueling work of moving bodies, El Paso officials turned to jail inmates Nov. 9. The inmates, serving low-level sentences, were paid $2 an hour in what was hoped to be a temporary job. The county asked for help from the National Guard to take over the work from inmates last week, said El Paso County Judge Ricardo Samaniego.

Earlier this week, there was no word from the state. Gov. Greg Abbott, who serves as commander-in-chief of Texas military forces, previously said …

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