Killeen News Now – More than 3,300 U.S. Army service members refused the mandatory COVID-19 vaccine. Those vaccine refusers are facing discharge from the U.S. Army.
The Army announced it will immediately begin discharging soldiers who have refused to get the mandatory COVID-19 vaccine. The U.S. Army is the final military service to institute a discharge policy for vaccine refusers. Over 650 Marines, airmen, and sailors have been discharged from the military or dismissed from boot camps. Nearly 97% of Army personnel have had at least one shot. Those that have completed the disciplinary process, which started with a written reprimand, will be the first to be discharged for misconduct. Those who are eligible to retire may do so before July 1. Those requesting a medical, administrative, or religious exemption must go through a review process that requires counseling with medical personnel, chaplains, and senior commanders.
“Unvaccinated soldiers present risk to the force and jeopardize readiness. We will begin involuntary separation proceedings for Soldiers who refuse the vaccine order and are not pending a final decision on an exemption.”– Army Secretary Christine Wormuth
Directive 2022-02 (Personnel Actions for Active Duty Soldiers Who Refuse the COVID-19 Vaccination Order and Accession Requirements for Unvaccinated Individuals) is available at (https://armypubs.army.mil/ProductMaps/PubForm/ArmyDir.aspx).
Recent updates on army vaccination and exemption statistics are available online at https://www.army.mil/article/253543/.