Sununu: Veterans Affairs Denying it Requested 500M Gloves

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Montana National Guard airport coronavirus screening
Montana National Guard soldiers and airmen don personal protective equipment before they began screening incoming passengers at the Bert Mooney Regional Airport in Butte, Montana, April 3, 2020. (Michael Touchette/U.S. Air National Guard)

CONCORD, N.H. (AP) — Gov. Chris Sununu asked the Department of Veterans Affairs on Friday to “follow through on their promise" to purchase millions of heavy duty rubber gloves procured by a New Hampshire company in response to a pandemic-related request for personal protective equipment.

In a letter to Secretary Denis McDonough, Sununu said in October 2020, the secretary's office reached out to the company, Gigunda Group, “to locate, procure and ultimately provide funding" for 500 million gloves. The company has helped the VA with other PPE requests, including $7.4 million worth of nasal swabs.

“At that time, locating 10 million or 20 million nitrile gloves was a big deal," Sununu wrote. “Gigunda was tasked with searching the globe to locate a supplier that could provide 500 million gloves and with capability to provide as many as 2-5 billion over time."

Since then, Sununu said he learned the VA's procurement arm claims no such request was made. “This is unacceptable," he wrote.

“Over 20 million nitrile gloves have been sitting in Gigunda’s TSA secure facility since May, and yet the VA has chosen to ignore and deny the existence of this successful partnership," he wrote.

A message seeking comment was left with the department's office of public affairs.

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