The U.S. Navy has set up an organization to deal with the expulsion of sailors who refuse to receive the COVID-19 vaccine and whose books do not require a suspended or approved waiver.
On Thursday, Navy officials announced the creation of a Covid Consolidated Disposal Authority to oversee administrative exit for sailors that meet the definition of “vaccine denial.”
The Pentagon did not say how many Navy or other military personnel were actively refusing the vaccine. Recent media reports have claimed that more than 200,000 military personnel have not yet been fully vaccinated, and the number of denials for political or other reasons is unclear.
Military officials say more than 98 percent of the Navy’s active duty personnel have already completed or are in the process of vaccinating. The Navy has also clarified the dangers of not having a vaccine.
“There have been 164 deaths in the Navy family due to COD-19, far more than the total number of injuries or deaths related to all other health or accident-related injuries,” said Vice Admin John B. Noel Jr., Chief of Naval Staff. Said in the statement. He said that 144 deaths were due to people who had not been vaccinated, while the condition of vaccination of the remaining 20 personnel was unspecified.
The Navy has ordered all active duty sailors to be fully vaccinated by November 28, 2021. Complete the 14-day waiting period required to receive the food vaccine, and complete vaccination.
“Sailors must be prepared at all times to carry out their missions around the world, including in areas where vaccination rates are low and disease transmission is high,” Navy officials said in a statement. Immunizations are critical to the health of the force and the readiness of the navy to prepare for war.
The announcement comes almost two months after Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin ordered all military personnel to be vaccinated.
Limited vaccine exemptions may be granted in certain cases, including possible medical or religious reasons. With regard to the Navy, the Pentagon has indicated that commanders are authorized to reassign naval personnel who refuse vaccines on the basis of “operational readiness or mission requirements.”
But sailors who refuse can be fired, and unapproved waivers will have five days after officers are notified to begin the vaccination process or discharge their duties.
The Navy’s Kuwait 19 Authority also has the power to charge the sailors who refuse the vaccine any bonus amount or special duty, as well as training and education expenses. Contrary to the “honorable discharge” situation, some veterans’ benefits may be lost as a result.