Pentagon Ordered to Specify How It Treats Religious Exemption Requests to Vaccine Mandate

By Zachary Stieber

November 1, 2021 Updated: November 1, 2021

The Department of Defense has been ordered to outline in detail how service members can apply for religious exemptions to its COVID-19 vaccine mandate, as well as how officials decide whether to approve or deny such requests.

Pentagon officials must explain in detail how troops can apply for a religious exemption, the procedure for resolving the request, the criteria by which applications are judged, and the procedure the people deciding on each request use to judge them, U.S. District Judge Steven Merryday, a George H. W. Bush appointee, ordered on Oct. 29.

The Pentagon must file the details by Nov. 12.