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Ron DeSantis Congratulates First Graduating Class of Florida State Guard

At the end of last week, Gov. Ron DeSantis congratulated the first graduating class of Florida State Guard soldiers.

Over the past two weeks, more than 100 soldiers officially completed the training program and became members of the Florida State Guard. DeSantis reestablished the Florida State Guard in 2022, joining 22 other states and territories that sustain state-level defense forces. Members of the Florida State Guard will assist federal, state, and local government agencies and the Florida National Guard during emergencies to ensure the welfare and safety of Florida citizens.

“I am proud to welcome the first class of Florida State Guard members since 1947,” said DeSantis. “Even though the federal government has underfunded our National Guard, we are ensuring that we have the manpower needed to respond during emergencies. I’m proud of these men and women who answered the call to take on this important mission. When the need is greatest in their communities, these Guard members will be ready to answer the call.”

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“Florida has one of the most understaffed National Guards in the nation. Out of 54 states and territories, the Florida National Guard has the second worst resident-to-guardsman ratio. Since 1958, the Florida National Guard has had 12,000 troops while Florida’s population has grown from 5 million people to 22 million people. Florida regularly faces natural disasters — with another potentially active hurricane season on the horizon — so there is a clear and present need for a larger civilian emergency response force,” the governor’s office noted.


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