January 19, 2023

Defense Department Changes Course on Back Pay for Troops

The Pentagon announced on Tuesday that it is not planning to provide back pay to military service members who were discharged for not complying with its COVID-19 vaccine mandate.

The news contradicted another recent report that noted the military was considering the option.

"Right now, we are not currently pursuing back-pay to service members who were dismissed for refusing to take the COVID vaccination," Pentagon Press Secretary Air Force Brig. Gen. Patrick Ryder said during a press briefing.

On Friday, the Pentagon said it was considering the back pay option.

"All Service members and Veterans may apply at any time to the appropriate Discharge Review Board or Board for Correction for Military/Naval Records if they believe that there is an error or injustice in their records-to include those that were separated by the vaccine mandate," Pentagon spokesperson Maj. Charlie Dietz told Fox News Digital in a statement Friday.

"Regarding back pay, the Department is still exploring this and will provide its views on legislation of this nature at the appropriate time and through the appropriate process," he added.

Tennessee Republican Sen. Marsha Blackburn has been among the conservatives pushing for back pay for soldiers.

"Senator Cruz and I have legislation to ensure our brave men and women that were fired due to Biden's COVID vaccine mandate receive back pay and benefits," Blackburn said last week.

"At the Senate Armed Services committee I will continue pushing our military leaders to focus on threats posed by Communist China, Iran, Russia and North Korea — not woke mandates," she added.

The matter is likely to continue in controversy, though the Pentagon's latest word is that the back pay option is unexpected to happen.

Source: Breitbart News

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