BATTLE CREEK, Mich. –
As autumn approaches, the Defense Logistics Agency Disposition Services continues its support of pandemic response by supplying the armed forces and first responders with a variety of materials.
A wide range of items are turned in to DLA Disposition Services daily from military units that no longer require them. While some items are considered excess at one site, they may be needed to help fight COVID-19 in other locations.
DLA Disposition Services collects medical supplies such as gloves, masks and ventilators, as well as other non-medical items including tents, tables and blankets, for reuse by qualifying organizations free of charge.
“We’ve recently exceeded a total of $18 million in excess and surplus supplies and equipment provided to customers for COVID-19 relief efforts,” said DLA Disposition Services Director Mike Cannon.
About 600,000 items have been requested by the armed services and another 210,000 have shipped to first responders.
“Every single item requested had to be physically handled by our employees,” Cannon said.
Donation customers, also known as state and local organizations that request property via their state agencies for surplus property, or “SASP,” are the biggest benefactors, he explained.
“[U.S. Agency for International Development] received several large dollar-value items, defibrillators and other pieces of medical equipment, but only about 10% of the quantity that went to the SASPs,” Cannon said.
“During the month of August, we have sent out several items requisitioned by, and approved for, authorized COVID-19 relief efforts,” said David Stickney, operations supervisor, DLA Disposition Services at Hill Air Force Base, Utah. He said many of those items went out to Missouri, Colorado, Texas, and New York.
“All team members here at Disposition Services Hill have an enthusiastic attitude about being able to help others, even while being in a reduced capacity work environment due to COVID-19,” Stickney said. “I believe that when a person focuses on helping others, any individual trouble or hardship lessens in scope.”
DLA Disposition Services regularly supplies excess property to first responders. Law enforcement agencies receive excess equipment through the Law Enforcement Support Office, and fire departments access items through the Defense Department’s Firefighter Program; a partnership between DLA Disposition Services and the U.S. Forest Service.
First responders and nonprofit organization representatives can check with their state’s surplus property office to see if they are eligible to acquire items from DLA Disposition Services.