Pentagon Orders Civilian Workers to Be Fully Vaccinated by Nov. 22
By Fran Beyer | Tuesday, 05 October 2021 01:09 PM
The Department of Defense is mandating that all civilian workers get a COVID-19 shot by Nov. 22.
Deputy Defense Secretary Kathleen Hicks announced the order Monday, Stars and Stripes reported, noting Pentagon civilian workers will have to have gotten their final shot by Nov. 8 since a person isn’t considered fully vaccinated until two weeks after their last inoculation.
The ddirective comes after President Joe Biden last month ordered all federal agencies to require their workers get the shot "to ensure the health and safety of the federal workforce and members of the public with whom they interact," the memo noted, Stars and Stripes reported.
Since the start of the pandemic, 321 Defense Department civilians and 58 service members have died from COVID, the news outlet reported.
"Vaccinating DOD civilian employees against [the coronavirus] will save lives and allow for the defense of our nation," Hicks said in the memo.
Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin required the vaccine for all service members Aug. 24 — a day after the Food and Drug Administration gave full approval to the Pfizer shot. The service branches have set individual vaccination deadlines for their troops.
But they’re more forgiving than those set for civilian workers, the news outlet reported.
Active-duty soldiers have until Dec. 15 to become fully vaccinated, and Reserve and National Guard units have until June 30, 2022. Active-duty airmen and Space Force guardians must be fully vaccinated by Nov. 2, and Air Force reservists and Guard troops have until Dec. 2.
Navy Secretary Carlos Del Toro has ordered active-duty sailors and Marines get the vaccine by Nov. 28 and reservists by Dec. 28.