Josh Hawley needs Pentagon’s information on refusal of vaccination exemptions
Reviews that the Protection Division denied non secular exemptions to COVID-19 vaccine mandates in an assembly-line method utilizing the identical canned language drew a name for full disclosure from a outstanding Senate conservative.
Sen. Josh Hawley, Missouri Republican, made his demand for information and decision-making processes in a letter Thursday to performing DOD Inspector Common Sean O’Donnell.
The letter comes after studies in The Washington Instances and different information retailers of a memo from the IG to Protection Secretary Lloyd Austin cataloging quite a few points with the best way the armed forces processed and denied requests for non secular exemptions.
In keeping with Liberty Counsel, the public-interest legislation agency that disclosed the memo final Friday, “out of 24,818 non secular exemption requests acquired, solely 4 had been granted,” versus 4,146 medical exemptions given by the DOD.
Mr. O’Donnell’s memo warned Mr. Austin of “deliberate violation[s] of federal legislation” over the best way non secular exemption requests had been processed and the denials had been issued.
“The denial memorandums we reviewed typically didn’t mirror an individualized evaluation, demonstrating that the Senior Navy Official thought of the complete vary of details and circumstances related to the actual non secular lodging request,” Mr. O’Donnell wrote. “For instance, an Air Pressure basic denied one Airman’s request with the temporary assertion: ‘I disapprove your request for exemption from vaccination below the provisions of AFI 48-110, paragraph 2-6.b.3.’”
SEE ALSO: DOD fast-tracked vaccine non secular exemption denials, civil liberties legislation agency says
Mr. O’Donnell additionally advised the DOD chief the providers had been processing exemption requests — and issuing denials — so rapidly as to lift doubts about whether or not correct procedures had been being adopted.
“The enchantment authorities of the Providers we reviewed indicated that a median of fifty denials per day had been processed over a 90-day interval. Assuming a 10-hour work day with no breaks or consideration to different issues, the common evaluate interval was about 12 minutes for every package deal. Such a evaluate interval appears inadequate to course of every request in an individualized method and nonetheless carry out the duties required of their place,” he wrote.
In his letter to Mr. O’Donnell, Mr. Hawley known as the Pentagon’s course of a violation of the implicit compact America makes with service members who put their lives in danger.
“As a part of that compact, they’re assured they may have the proper to petition the Division of Protection for exemptions to sure necessities that violate their sincerely held non secular beliefs. The Division’s obvious failure to honor that compact is a betrayal of these servicemembers’ belief,” he added.
Mr. Hawley’s letter requested a response by Sept. 30.
A spokeswoman for Mr. O’Donnell advised The Washington Instances through e-mail his workplace “has acquired the letter from Sen. Hawley, and we’re reviewing it.”
SEE ALSO: Biden acknowledges pushback for declaring pandemic ‘over’
The query of what should be required to fight COVID-19 stays a contentious challenge. On Sunday, President Biden advised the Globalnews24.eu newsmagazine “60 Minutes” that the disaster had ended.
“The pandemic is over. We nonetheless have an issue with COVID. We’re nonetheless doing quite a lot of work on it. It’s — however the pandemic is over,” Mr. Biden stated.
That declaration resulted in pushback from a number of sides. On Tuesday, Sen. Roger Marshall, Kansas Republican and a doctor, launched a decision calling on Congress to vote to finish the emergency declaration made by then-President Trump in March 2020.
For extra info, go to The Washington Instances COVID-19 useful resource web page.