There are still more than ten percent of Army National Guard troops who still have not gotten the COVID-19 vaccine, putting them in violation of a federal mandate, and the director of the military force said soldiers will be given “every opportunity” to receive the vaccine.
Lt. Gen. Jon Jensen, director of the Army Guard, said in a statement to Insider on Friday that “We’re going to give every soldier every opportunity to get vaccinated and continue their military career.”
“We’re not giving up on anybody until the separation paperwork is signed and completed,” Jensen said.
This week’s deadline for Army National Guard members to get the COVID-19 shot expired at midnight on Thursday. In September of last year, the mandate was unveiled.
On Monday, the Army National Guard reported that 86.4 percent of its members had received the coronavirus vaccine in its entirety, and 88.59% had received the vaccine in at least one dose.
In total, 11.4 percent of Army National Guard soldiers have not received the COVID-19 vaccine as of Monday, and those soldiers could face punishments such as dismissal from the Guard.
In order to participate in drills, training, and other duties conducted under Title 32 of the United States Code, all National Guard members must be fully vaccinated for COVID-19 by the deadlines established by the Army and Air Force, as appropriate, or must subsequently become vaccinated, according to a National Guard Bureau spokesman.
The number of members who have requested exemptions from the COVID-19 vaccination has not yet been determined.
About 90% of the roughly 435,000 people who serve in our National Guard have received one dose of the coronavirus vaccine, while 88.2% of them are fully vaccinated.
About 94% of the 104,000 members of the Air National Guard are fully vaccinated and 94.2 percent have had at least one jab, which is higher than the Army National Guard’s rates.
“Soldiers and airmen are still providing civilian documentation to be entered into their Electronic Health Record, so the numbers may be higher than what we are currently seeing in the military system,” Rauschenberg said.