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Army changes will impact hundreds with early discharge

The Pentagon released information yesterday that will impact hundreds of soldiers as the Defense Department begins downsizing the Army.

Congress recently amended legislation that expands the services’ authority to separate Regular Army enlisted members from three months to one year prior to their scheduled date of separation, referred to as Expiration Term of Service (ETS).

The Army plans to begin using this authority in the next few days in a very targeted manner to address readiness by stabilizing enlisted soldiers at least six months prior to deployment.

The Army states this ruling is directed towards a small percentage of soldiers in deploying units who remain in the unit’s rear detachment due to insufficient time remaining before ETS to complete the deployment.

The Army will not immediately increase the period of early separation to one year, rather it will implement this change in a phased manner based on scheduled unit deployment dates.

Soldiers assigned to deploying units whose scheduled separation date precludes them from deploying with their unit will be given the opportunity to reenlist or extend.

Additionally, soldiers with more than three years of active service, but less than six years of service (in total) who elect not to reenlist (or extend) will be subject to involuntary early separation.

Commanders have the authority to retain a soldier for operational necessity and the discretion to retain a soldier for compassionate reasons.

Army Human Resources Command and Army G-1 will send commanders and soldiers implementation guidance.

For specifics regarding these issues, soldiers should contact their unit career counselor and read more here for the full report.

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