Thousands of U.S Navy and U.S. Marine Corps personnel still remain unvaccinated
against the Wuhan coronavirus (COVID-19) vaccine after the Nov. 28 deadline.
As of Nov. 29, the Navy reported 96.3 percent of its personnel as fully vaccinated and 97.2 percent of its personnel being partially vaccinated. This leaves about 9,500 sailors still unvaccinated against COVID-19.
The Navy reported on Nov. 24 that it had achieved 97 percent full vaccination rate and 99.8 percent partial vaccination rate for all personnel. This was, however, adjusted following errors in its data.
Navy spokeswoman Lt. Devin Arneson said in an email: "A recent review of the vaccination reporting and tracking system revealed discrepancies in the data and were appropriately corrected. Discrepancies included total force numbers and redundant entries. We strive to provide the most accurate and timely information to maintain transparency regarding the Navy's effort to fight COVID-19."
Meanwhile, the Marine Corps said that 92 percent of Marines have completed their vaccination schedule and 95 percent have received at least one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine as of Nov. 29. This leaves about 9,000 unvaccinated Marines in active duty.
The Navy and Marine Corps are the second and third uniformed services to reach the vaccine mandate deadline for active-duty personnel, following the U.S. Air Force's Nov. 2 deadline. Active-duty Air Force members have until Dec. 15 to be fully vaccinated.
With the expiration of the vaccination deadline for Navy personnel, different commands under the service may start processing separation papers for unvaccinated sailors. However, officials said each sailor will be scrutinized individually instead of discharging them in one go.
Navy Secretary Carlos Del Toro said on Nov. 17: "We will be addressing each case on a case-by-case basis. We're just not going to all kick them out on the day of the deadline itself." (Related: Navy declares ALL sailors who resist taking COVID-19 vaccine will be discharged – no exemptions, no exceptions
Sailors and Marines are considered fully vaccinated two weeks after they get injected with their second COVID-19 vaccine dose, or two weeks after they get the single-dose Johnson & Johnson vaccine.
Unvaccinated military personnel weaving through exemptions
Personnel in the Navy and Marine Corps face various scenarios with regard to their vaccination status. Some have only received one dose so far and need to wait for their second dose, while some have not yet put their vaccination data into the database.
Others have also applied for exemptions – medical, administrative or religious – with the risk of those being denied. Sailors and Marines are able to ask for exemptions to COVID-19 vaccination, just like other required shots. However, religious exemptions usually follow a process – starting from a chaplain interview until adjudication by a final approving authority.
The Navy has approved seven permanent medical exemptions, 400 temporary medical exemptions and 134 administrative exemptions as of writing. It also has six pending medical exemption requests.
The Marine Corps, on the other hand, has approved 14 medical exemptions, 316 temporary medical exemptions and 452 temporary administrative exemptions. It is still processing around 540 accommodation requests.
In a statement, the Navy said it "does not normally grant religious accommodations for vaccinations" – a sentiment shared by the Marine Corps. None of the religious accommodation requests filed by 2,441 Marines and 2,531 sailors as of Nov. 29 had been approved.
Former intelligence officer Jeffrey Prather pointed out in his Brighteon.TV
program "Prather Point" that religious accommodations sought by sailors and Marines are a must
. "Actually, you can demand a religious exemption – it's the law."
He also slammed the Nov. 28 vaccination deadline for the Navy and Marine Corps: "Well, what is the rush? This corresponds with the Great Reset when we become the digital currency through the graphene oxide in the jab. It has been debunked – COVID-19 is like the flu. It's the vaccine that is deadly because that has the graphene oxide." (Related: Jeffrey Prather: COVID-19 vaccines are part of fifth-generation warfare – Brighteon.TV
has more articles about vaccine mandates in the Navy and Marine Corps.