POTUS Reports on Coronavirus in TV Briefing While Pentagon Sends Travel Memo to Military, First Responders

In addition to Wednesday night’s Presidential address to the nation regarding the coronavirus pandemic and some of the steps being taken by his healthcare team, led by Vice President Mike Pense, Secretary of Defense Mark Esper also reported on actions he and his team are taking or will be taking.
Secretary Esper sent out an indepth memorandum to all military branches as well as other public service leaders who head law enforcement agencies, fire departments, paramedics and emergency medical units, as well as city and state government officials throughout the U.S.
Here is a part of Esper’s Coronavirus plan received by the National Association of Chiefs of Police:

SECRETARY OF DEFENSE

1000 DEFENSE PENTAGON

WASHINGTON, DC 20301-1000

 

MEMORANDUM FOR: SEE DISTRIBUTION

 

SUBJECT: Travel Restrictions for DoD Components in Response to Coronavirus Disease 2019

References: (a) Office of the Under Secretary of Defense for Personnel and Readiness Memorandum, “Force Health Protection Guidance (Supplement 4)”Department of Defense Guidance for Personnel Traveling During the Novel Coronavirus Outbreak” March 11 , 2020 (b) DoD Instruction 6200.03, “Public Health Emergency Management within the DoD,” March 28, 2019

This memorandum applies to all DoD uniformed and civilian personnel and their sponsored family members not under the responsibility of a U.S. Chief of Mission.

Effective March 13, 2020, all DoD uniformed personnel, civilian personnel and family members traveling to, from, or through Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Travel Health Notices Level 3 (COVID-19) designated locations, will stop movement for the next 60 days.

This includes all forms of official travel, including Permanent Change of Station, Temporary Duty, and government-funded leave. For DoD uniformed personnel, this also includes personal leave and other non-official travel. DoD travelers should carefully plan travel to ensure their scheduled flights do not transit through or originate in Level 3 designated locations. Authorized Departures are delayed until appropriate transportation and reception procedures are in place for their intended route of travel as prescribed in this memorandum.

Effective March 13, 2020, all DoD uniformed personnel, civilian personnel and family members traveling to, from, or through Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Travel Health Notices Level 3 (COVID-19) designated locations, will stop movement for the next 60 days.

FILE – In this June 26, 2019 file photo, U.S. Secretary for Defense Mark Esper speaks during a press point with NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg prior to a meeting of NATO defense ministers at NATO headquarters in Brussels. Esper, an Army veteran and former defense industry lobbyist, won Senate confirmation Tuesday to be the Secretary of Defense. (AP Photo/Virginia Mayo, Pool)

This includes all forms of official travel, including Permanent Change of Station, Temporary Duty, and government-funded leave. For DoD uniformed personnel, this also includes personal leave and other non-official travel. DoD travelers should carefully plan travel to ensure their scheduled flights do not transit through or originate in Level 3 designated locations. Authorized Departures are delayed until appropriate transportation and reception procedures are in place for their intended route of travel as prescribed in this memorandum.

Effective March 13, 2020, and for the 60 days thereafter, concurrent official travel for family members of DoD uniformed personnel and civilian personnel is denied to CDC Travel Health Notices Level 2 (COVID-19) designated locations. Additionally, until the travel restrictions prescribed above are lifted, DoD civilian personnel hiring actions for positions in Level 2 and Level 3 designated locations are postponed for non-essential civilian personnel who have not yet begun travel.

Also effective March 13, 2020, DoD Components must determine whether official travel by DoD personnel to locations other than CDC Travel Health Notices Level 3 designated locations is mission essential and must defer non-mission essential travel. Mission-essential travel refers to work that must be performed to ensure the continued operations of mission essential functions, as determined by the DoD Component.

Exceptions may be granted in writing to the guidance contained herein for compelling cases where the travel is:

(1) determined to be mission essential;

(2) necessary for humanitarian reasons;

(3) warranted due to extreme hardship.

Approval authority for these exceptions belongs to the Combatant Commander if the individual is assigned to a combatant command. The Secretary of the Military Department concerned and the Chief Management Officer in the case of Defense Field Activities and Field Agencies retain the authority for all other individuals.

This authority may be delegated in writing no lower than the first general or flag officer or member of the Senior Executive Service in the traveler’s chain of command or supervision.

These exceptions are to be done on a case by case basis, shall be limited in number, and shall be coordinated between the gaining and losing organizations. Individuals pending retirement or separation within the next 60 days are exempt. Individuals traveling under an exception or exemption, including those traveling as part of a Department of State-issued Authorized Departure, are subject to travel screening protocols as provided in reference (a).

These actions give preeminence to the safety and security of our personnel and their families. During the next 60 days, the Department will take several measures to enhance traveler safety. Each of your organizations, as applicable, shall take immediate action to:

  • Establish pre- and post- travel screening and reception procedures for all travelers as provided in reference (a), to include providing members or civilian employees information regarding prescribed actions for them and their family members given their particular circumstances.
  • Establish a means of communication with all personnel throughout the reception process until they are allowed to resume their normal duties;
  • Transition to military or DoD contracted aircraft for DoD sponsored travelers coming from or going to CDC Level 3 or Level 2 designated areas, to the greatest extent practical; and
  • Inform all travelers of their responsibility to contact their gaining organization in advance of travel and to keep the organization updated on their travel itinerary.

Refer to the latest Force Health Protection Supplement for all areas not specifically addressed by this guidance. Our understanding of COVID-19 is rapidly evolving, and this guidance will be continuously evaluated as conditions warrant. Component heads should ensure this guidance is clearly communicated to those affected by these changes to travel policy.

Mark Esper
Secretary of Defense

Jim Kouri National Assn. of Chief of Police

Jim Kouri Conservative Base's editor, Jim, is founder and CEO of Kouri Associates, a homeland security, public safety and political consulting firm. He's formerly Fifth Vice-President, now a Board Member of the National Association of Chiefs of Police, a columnist, and a contributor to this Radio Show. He's the author of two books: "Crime Talk: Conversations with America's Top Law Enforcement Officers" and "Assume the Position: Police Science for Journalists and Screenwriters." . Kouri appears regularly as on-air commentator for over 100 TV and radio news and talk shows including Fox News Channel, Oprah, McLaughlin Report, CNN Headline News, MTV, etc. He also serves as political advisor for Emmy and Golden Globe winning actor Michael Moriarty (Law & Order).. He holds a bachelor of science in Criminal Justice from Southwest University and SCI Technical School in New York City and completed training at the NYC Police Academy, FBI Continuing Education Program, and the Certified Protection Professional (CPP) of the American Society for Industrial Security. To subscribe to Kouri's newsletter write to C[email protected] and write "Subscription" on the subject line.

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