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Army to Initiate Separation Actions on IRR Soldiers Who Disobeyed Mobilization Orders

Today the Army announced that it will begin initiating separation proceedings for approximately 80 Soldiers in the Individual Ready Reserve (IRR) who failed to report for duty in accordance with their mobilization orders. Since August 1, 2004, the Army has mobilized IRR Soldiers to fill Army Reserve and National Guard units deploying to the Central Command Theater of Operations. To date, the Army has issued mobilization orders to over 7,200 IRR Soldiers, with over 3,000 currently on active duty. The remaining IRR Soldiers who received their orders are either awaiting their report date, are under consideration by the delay or exemption process, or have already completed their tour of duty.

Approximately 1% of IRR Soldiers who have been issued a mobilization order have, without authority, disobeyed those orders and failed to report for duty. Pursuant to existing Army policy, the Human Resources Command (HRC) has either made positive contact with these Soldiers, or has otherwise made numerous attempts to make personal contact with them, to determine if these Soldiers received or knew of their mobilization orders. Attempts to contact Soldiers included use of U.S. Postal Service registered mail, telephone calls, voice messages, telephone calls and messages left with relatives, and electronic mail. IRR Soldiers who acknowledge receipt or knowledge of their mobilization orders, but still failed to report as ordered without authority, and Soldiers HRC cannot determine whether they knew of or received their orders, after exercising due diligence, may be processed for involuntary separation from the Army. Because of these Soldiers' disregard of their duty, the Army will initiate separation proceedings on all IRR Soldiers who fail to obey mobilization orders.

Separation boards will be centrally conducted at HRC, in accordance with enlisted separation policy (AR 135-178) and officer separation policy (AR 135-175), to ensure each IRR Soldier receives a fair and impartial review. After proper notification and advisement of rights, each Soldier’s case will be reviewed on its own merits by a separation board (unless the Soldier is not eligible for a board or if not otherwise waived by the Soldier). The board will first consider whether the Soldier should be separated because the Soldier intentionally failed to obey a mobilization order and, if so, the board would also make a recommendation as to the type of discharge the board believes is appropriate. If a board recommends separation, the Commander HRC, as the separation authority will determine characterization of service or level of discharge after reviewing the case and recommendation of the separation board. The levels of discharge these Soldiers could receive, ranging from most to least favorable are Honorable, General Under Honorable Conditions, or Other Than Honorable. A less favorable characterization of service may adversely affect an IRR Soldier’s benefits after separation and may cause a Soldier to encounter substantial prejudice in civilian life. Finally, either the board, or the separation authority, may decide to retain a Soldier, on a case by case basis.

Media contact: Office Army Public Affairs - LTC Pamela Hart at 703-697-5662 or pamela.hart@hqda.army.mil.



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