Diverse Defenders: The Changing Face of the Minnesota National Guard

Diverse Defenders: The Changing Face of the Minnesota National Guard Photo: KSTP/ Farrah Fazal

November 22, 2017 06:02 AM

READ the full report here.


The face of the Minnesota National Guard is changing.

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Citizen soldiers who live, work and serve their communities also reflect the changing demographics of those communities when they put on their uniforms.

Guard commanders believe areas they serve have become more diverse, and soldiers must reflect that diversity.

Sixteen percent of soldiers in the Minnesota National Guard are now from diverse communities. The Minnesota Guard's efforts to diversify started seven years ago.

Recently, they were recognized as the most diverse guard in 54 states and territories.

Specialist Samia Mousa is "absolutely changing the face of the Minnesota National Guard," said one of her commanders. She's a Somali-American soldier who wants to be a doctor.

But new Department of Defense policies could slow down efforts to recruit diverse defenders, according to guard commanders.
Our in-depth report focuses on why diverse defenders are critical to the mission, and how the Guard is dealing with changing policies.

The new head of the Minnesota National Guard said the Guard has the toughest requirements to join and the government should not "block non-U.S. citizens from joining the military."

Credits

Farrah Fazal

Copyright 2017 - KSTP-TV, LLC A Hubbard Broadcasting Company

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