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DAF issues guidance on COVID-related adverse actions; Religious Accommodation Requests

  • Published
  • Secretary of the Air Force Public Affairs

Editor’s note: This article has been updated to remove the March 17 deadline, which is an internal suspense to notify DoD that any related policies, directives and guidance have been updated.

The Department of the Air Force has issued guidance on removal of adverse actions and handling of Religious Accommodation Requests related to refusal of COVID-19 vaccinations effective Feb. 24.

The DAF will remove adverse information from records of those currently serving service members who sought an exemption on religious, administrative, or medical grounds and who received adverse actions solely due to their refusal to take the vaccine. Members will be notified by their command or the Air Force Personnel Center/Air Reserve Personnel Center.

Current service members do not need to initiate any actions for their records to be updated.

Adverse information actions include:

  • Letters of admonishment, counseling or reprimand, and records of individual counseling will be rescinded.
  • Nonjudicial punishments issued solely for vaccine refusal will be set aside in their entirety.
  • Referral performance reports issued solely for vaccine refusal after requesting an exemption will be removed from personnel records and replaced with a statement of non-rated time.
  • Promotion records will be corrected by the DAF who will remove or redact all adverse actions related to vaccine refusal.
  • Current involuntary discharge proceedings will be terminated.

Additionally, the department has cancelled all outstanding Religious Accommodation Requests for COVID-19 vaccination exemption.

Members who submitted an RAR for non-COVID-19 vaccination exemptions may update and resubmit their request for other mandated vaccination exemptions. To expedite processing, members are asked to resubmit within 30 days.

USAF. (U.S. Air Force Graphic by Rosario "Charo" Gutierrez)