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Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Message to the Joint Force: COVID-19 Vaccine

Office of the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Public Affairs —

Aug. 9, 2021

Statement by Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Gen. Mark A. Milley:

"The good health and readiness of our force is critical to America's defense. We need
each and every Soldier, Sailor, Airmen, Marine, and Guardian healthy and capable of performing
our duties. COVID-19 is a threat to force protection and readiness.

With this in mind, the Secretary of Defense intends to mandate vaccinations for all
Service members in the coming weeks. The Joint Force medical professionals recommended this
as a necessary step to sustain our readiness and protect our force, our coworkers, our families,
and our communities.

Mandating vaccines in the military is not new. Since the first days of basic training and
throughout our service, we've received multiple vaccines. We have proven processes with
trusted and skilled medical professionals.

We fight together in the defense of our Nation. We are responsible for each other's
health and safety. Vaccines are the best tools to protect us from COVID-19. If you have taken
the vaccine, thank you. If you have not yet taken the vaccine, please do so to protect yourself
and those around you. If you have questions about this vaccine, its side effects or implications,
consult with your leaders and medical providers."

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