As of Thursday, a total of 103 Marines have been separated from the Corps for refusing to get vaccinated against COVID-19, the Marine Corps confirmed.
The active duty Marine force had until Nov. 28 to be vaccinated or apply for an exemption. All who failed to meet that timeline will be administratively separated from the Marine Corps, according to a previously published administrative message.
Currently 95% of the active duty Marine Corps is partially or fully vaccinated and the Corps has approved 1,007 exemptions to the vaccine, Maj. Jim Stenger, a Marine Corps spokesman, told Marine Corps Times in an email.
Marines discharged solely for refusing the vaccine will receive either an honorable or general discharge, according to provisions in the 2022 National Defense Authorization Act, which passed Congress on Wednesday and is awaiting President Joe Biden’s signature.
All approved exemptions have either been medical or administrative exemptions.
A total of 3,144 Marines have applied for religious exemptions. As of Thursday, 2,863 have been processed and none have been approved, Stenger said in the email.
The Marine Corps has no records of approving religious exemptions for vaccines in the past 10 years, Marine Corps Times previously reported.
The Marine Corps currently has the lowest vaccination rate among the Department of Defense.
The Air Force and Space Force had 96% of forces meet its Nov. 2 deadline, while the Navy reported that 96.3% of active duty sailors were fully vaccinated.
With the active duty Army deadline passing on Wednesday, the service reported that 98% of its active duty force was fully vaccinated.
If total vaccination numbers do not increase, the Corps may end up administratively separating more than 8,000 Marines for refusing to get vaccinated against COVID-19.