WASHINGTON D.C. — Rep. Bill Huizenga (R-Zeeland) and 38 Republican and Democratic House co-signers sent a letter to top military officials Thursday, requesting that National Guard members serving in D.C., receive per diems for the duration of their deployment and retroactively for any meals they paid for out-of-pocket.
The request comes amid reports that soldiers have been subject to eating low quality, poorly prepared food while guarding the Capitol. Nearly 50 National Guard members have been treated for gastrointestinal issues.
In the letter addressed to Army Secretary John Whitley and National Guard Chief General Daniel Hokanson, Rep. Huizenga says although conditions have been acknowledged by National Guard leadership, “the situation does not appear to have been rectified and immediate action must be taken.”
Huizenga asked that guard members receive per diems immediately to buy proper meals and receive retroactive pay to cover cost of when they purchased meals with their own money, because of the inedible nature of contracted meals.
“There is no reason they cannot be fed safely and adequately while serving our nation’s capital,” Huizenga added.
Roughly 1,000 guardsmen and women from Michigan are still in Washington, D.C. protecting the nation’s capital after the Jan. 6 riots.