In an effort to show support for the medical freedoms of U.S. soldier who oppose the military’s new mandate regarding COVID shots, Mat-Su residents will hold two rallies, Aug. 27-28.
“The concerned community members of the Valley are showing their gratitude and support by gathering with civilians, parents and families of our military,” said Kelly Anderson-Riggs, who is helping to organize the rallies. “We are protesting for our brothers and sisters that deserve medical freedom if they so choose. They have fought for us. We need to fight for them and their right to have bodily autonomy.”
The U.S. Dept. of Defense has made COVID shots mandatory for all Armed Forces and members of those in the Ready Reserve, including National Guard members. A large segment of the military, however, remains unvaccinated.
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U.S. Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin issued a memo on Aug. 24 ordering military branches to “immediately begin full vaccination” and to “impose ambitious timelines for implementation.”
With large portions of the military opposed to COVID vaccines due to documented health and safety concerns, many military families face a difficult decision – either take the shot against their will or face the prospect of being discharged from the Armed Forces.
The upcoming rallies take place on Aug. 27, 3 p.m., at the park-and-ride lot near Mat-Su Regional Hospital (by the round-a-bout at the Trunk Rd/Glenn Hwy. overpass), and Aug. 28 near Hemmer Road and the Palmer-Wasilla Hwy (Next to the Alaska Club in Palmer).