Oklahoma National Guard activates Joint Task Force in response to COVID-19

Oklahoma National Guard (KXII)

OKLAHOMA CITY (KXII) - The Oklahoma National Guard has activated its Joint Task Force at the guard's Regional Training Institute in Oklahoma City in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

A press release from the Oklahoma National Guard states "The Joint Task Force, made up of members of both the Oklahoma Army and Air National Guard, is currently laying the ground work for possible support missions Oklahoma Guardsmen may be called to perform."

As of Friday evening, Brigadier General Tommy Mancino says rumors circulating online of a statewide lockdown and the guard enforcing martial law are not true and urges Oklahomans to remain calm and not panic.

“Let’s have a candid discussion about martial law. Marital law is a thing; it exists within the constitutional powers granted to the Governor, but our Governor has made it very clear we are here to support the people and agencies of Oklahoma,” Mancino said.

“This is a very serious incident, but it is not an opportunity or place in time in history where we should allow ourselves to panic. This is a very well known problem. We know what COVID-19 is. We know how it is transmitted. We know to whom it is dangerous and to whom it is not; and we have a plan in Oklahoma to address this aggressively,” Mancino said.