CBP Welcomes National Guard at California Ports of Entry
SAN DIEGO - Today, as part of Operation Guardian Support, CBP officials at ports of entry along the California border with Mexico welcomed 24 California National Guard personnel.
Operation Guardian Support (OGS) includes the deployment of National Guard troops to the Port of San Diego, and the San Ysidro, Otay Mesa, Tecate, and Calexico ports of entry. They will fill vital, non-enforcement roles such as operational and surveillance support.
National Guard members will assist CBP officers in the movement of conveyances to inspections areas and facilitate the movement of vehicles, allowing more officers to focus on front line duties.
Up to an additional 106 National Guard members may deploy to the ports of entry in the coming weeks.
The vast majority of CBP drug interdictions, including opioids, occur along the southwest land border from all environments and transportation modes. The support of the National Guard will enable CBP to increase its multi-layered approach to border security and allow CBP officers to focus on law enforcement efforts of securing the border against all threats – drugs, weapons, illegal aliens, and possible terrorists.
“The contribution of the National Guard will undoubtedly improve our effectiveness at the ports of entry by enabling those officers to focus on enforcement activities,” said Pete Flores, CBP Director of field operations for San Diego. “We look forward to working collaboratively to further our national security mission.”
The purpose is to accelerate improvements to border security through the support of the National Guard as CBP hires, trains and equips additional CBP officers.
National Guard personnel reported today and received familiarization training associated with their assigned duties and responsibilities. National Guard personnel deployed under OGS will not engage in enforcement operations in the field and will not be armed.
The Department of Defense is supporting the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) with National Guard personnel operating under title 32 U.S.C. § 502. Under this authority, National Guard personnel may support operations or missions requested by the President or the Secretary of Defense. In this case, the National Guard is operating in support of DHS pursuant to the order of the President. In Title 32 status, the National Guard is ordered to duty by their respective state governors and remain under their command and control.
U.S. Customs and Border Protection is the unified border agency within the Department of Homeland Security charged with the management, control and protection of our nation's borders at and between the official ports of entry. CBP is charged with keeping terrorists and terrorist weapons out of the country while enforcing hundreds of U.S. laws.