More than 10,000 active-duty airmen will not be vaccinated by deadline

·2 min read

With the Air Force's Nov. 2 deadline for active-duty personnel to get the coronavirus vaccine less than two weeks away, any airman still unvaccinated will not qualify.

Less than 4% of active-duty airmen remain unvaccinated as of Oct. 19, according to Air Force data, and that accounts for just shy of 12,000 personnel out of the total force of roughly 312,000. In total, 92% of airmen are already vaccinated and 4.2% are partially vaccinated, according to the same data.


A service member is not considered fully vaccinated until two weeks after he or she has received the second dose of a two-shot COVID-19 vaccine or two weeks after the single-dose Johnson & Johnson vaccine.

For those partially vaccinated airmen to qualify before the Nov. 2 deadline, they would have had to receive their second dose of a two-part vaccine or the J&J shot by this past Tuesday.

"An Airman or Guardian who is not vaccinated by Nov. 2 will be in violation of a lawful general order and subject to discipline under Article 92, UCMJ," Technical Sergeant Deana M. Heitzman, a spokeswoman for the U.S. Air Force, previously told the Washington Examiner. "Even if a service member has stated they will refuse the vaccination, the order would not be violated until the deadline passes."

In the Department of the Air Force’s Sept. 3 announcement, the department warned airmen that “any refusal to receive the COVID-19 vaccine, absent an approved exemption or accommodation, may be punishable under the Uniform Code of Military Justice."

"Military commanders retain the full range of disciplinary options available to them under the UCMJ," the statement added, and Heitzman noted that commanders "must consult with their servicing Staff Judge Advocate for additional guidance on vaccination non-compliance."

The Air Force reserves have until Dec. 12 to get vaccinated, and as of Oct. 19, more than 92% are already fully or partially vaccinated.


Each military branch has come up with its own deadline for active-duty and reserve troops to get the vaccine, and the Air Force's Nov. 2 deadline is the earliest among them.

The Navy's deadline of Nov. 28 is the next up, though more than 94% of active-duty sailors are fully immunized, and 99% have already received at least one dose of the vaccine.

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Tags: News, Defense, National Security, Coronavirus, Vaccination, Air Force, Mandate

Original Author: Mike Brest

Original Location: More than 10,000 active-duty airmen will not be vaccinated by deadline

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