Department of Defense releases updated mask policy


COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. — Fully vaccinated people are no longer required to wear a mask indoors or outdoors at Department of Defense facilities, the department said in a memo Thursday.

The updated mask policy comes after the CDC issued a guideline saying fully vaccinated people no longer have to wear masks outdoors or in most indoor settings.

“In support of updated Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) guidelines released this afternoon, subject to any applicable labor relations obligations, fully vaccinated DoD personnel (who are at least two weeks beyond their final dose) are no longer required to wear a mask indoors or outdoors at DoD facilities,” the department said in a memo.

Masks are still required for those awaiting fully vaccinated status, or those who choose not to receive the vaccine.

“All DoD personnel should continue to comply with CDC guidance regarding areas where masks should be worn, including within airports,” the memo continued. “Personnel who are not fully vaccinated should continue to follow applicable DoD mask guidance, including continuing to wear masks indoors.”

The memo said commanders and supervisors can make exceptions “as necessary to ensure a safe workforce.”

They also noted commanders and supervisors should not ask about an employee’s vaccination status, or use information about an employee’s vaccination status to make decisions about how and when the employee will report to a workplace instead of teleworking.

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