Nearly a dozen people working on President Donald Trump’s border wall in Arizona have been infected with the coronavirus.
The cases were first noticed by county health officials in south-central Arizona last month. There’s been 11 so far diagnosed. All are contractors or employees of contractors working for the Kiewit Infrastructure West Company, which has been rewarded a significant share of border wall contracts for the Trump administration.
Francisco Garcia is chief medical officer for Pima County.
"Given the amount of case growth, it’s not that surprising that when we do digging into these cases that there has been an increase," he said. "Yes, it's a significant number. We are experiencing increases all over. This is not where our elevations in Pima County are coming from."
Garcia noted that increases of COVID-19 are predominantly among social interaction transmissions of people between 18 and 40 years.
The border town of Lukeville has been an epicenter of Kiewit’s border wall projects in Arizona as the Trump administration races to complete 450 miles of the project before the November elections.
In an email, a Customs and Border Protection spokesman sent this statement from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers:
Border town residents have complained for months about border wall workers in Ajo and across the state in Bisbee for not following social distancing guidelines and for not wearing masks.