The Department of Defense on Wednesday released a new policy in which separation procedures will begin for service members who have been non-deployable for the last 12 months or more.
“This new policy is a 12-month deploy or be removed policy,” Robert Wilkie, the under secretary of defense for personnel and readiness, told the U.S. Senate on Wednesday. “However, there are exceptions.”
“The situation we face today is really unlike anything we have faced, certainly in the post-World War II era,” Wilkie told the Senate Armed Services subcommittee on personnel and readiness. “On any given day, about 13 to 14 percent of the force is medically unable to deploy. That comes out to be about 286,000 [service members].”
The move comes after Defense Secretary Jim Mattis’ memo last year that stated that “everyone who comes into the service and everyone who stays in the service is world-wide deployable.”
According to various estimates, between 11 to 14 percent, or 200,000, service members are currently non-deployable.