U.S. Texas assists El Paso County with mortuary services amid pandemic

2020-11-21 23:05:47 GMT2020-11-22 07:05:47(Beijing Time) Xinhua English

HOUSTON, Nov. 21 (Xinhua) -- U.S. Texas Army National Guard is sending a 36-person team to assist with mortuary services starting on Saturday in the border county of El Paso that was hit hard lately by the COVID-19 pandemic, The Texas Tribune reported, citing multiple state lawmakers.

"This is very much needed in our community," the report quoted Democratic state Rep. and Sen.-elect Cesar Blanco as saying.

El Paso, a U.S. border county adjacent to Mexico, has been devastated by the coronavirus for more than a month. Official figures showed that El Paso County has reported over 16,000 new cases in the last two weeks, thousands more than the numbers reported for the much larger counties.

Also, nearly 950 residents have died of COVID-19 since the pandemic began, placing the county far ahead of the state's other major urban counties in deaths per 1,000 residents.

After county volunteers backed away from moving bodies who died of COVID-19, El Paso officials paid the inmates who are serving low-level sentences 2 U.S. dollars an hour to do the job. Enditem