The Pentagon will require active members of the United States Military to get vaccinated against COVID-19 before September 15th, according to Fox News and the Associated Press.
“I will seek the president’s approval to make the vaccines mandatory no later than mid-September, or immediately upon [FDA approval] whichever comes first,” Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin said in the memo, expected to be released to troops on Monday.
“I will not hesitate to act sooner or recommend a different course to the President if l feel the need to do so,” Austin added. “To defend this Nation, we need a healthy and ready force.”
The Pfizer vaccine is excepted to be approved by the Food and Drug Administration within the next four or five weeks.
“So far, more than 74% of the Navy have received at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine. Other branches of the military lag behind, with 65% of active duty Air Force members and 60% of Air Force reserves having had at least one shot. In the Army, that number is closer to 50%, the AP reported,” writes Fox News.
President Biden hailed the Pentagon’s decision Monday, saying he “strongly supports” the Secretary’s move.
— Kelly O'Donnell (@KellyO) August 9, 2021