Uniforms do not substitute as ID cards
May 28, 2010
By Amy Sunseri
FORT HUACHUCA, Ariz. -- Although it may not always be convenient, servicemembers, their spouses and dependents are required to always have their government identification card in possession.
AR 600-8-14 reads: "ID card holders are required to carry their ID cards at all times."
"You're in the service 24/7 all your benefits, rights and privileges flow from the ID card," said Capt. Eric Coulson, Chief Military Justice, United States Army Intelligence Center of Excellence, Office of the Staff Judge Advocate.
If a Soldier was to get injured in Phoenix, Coulson says their ID card would count as the Soldier's TRICARE card to get care.
"The big thing is Soldiers, their spouses and dependents could be denied a service or privilege that they're entitled to," said Coulson.
If a Soldier is denied something because they don't have their ID card, Coulson says they really have no complaint.
Coulson stresses that a military uniform does not substitute for a military ID card.
"I can go down and buy a uniform at the Salvation Army," said Coulson.
There have been incidents where people have tried to enter the United States wearing an Army uniform according to Coulson, who says this is a huge security threat, which is why the ID card is critical.
"I would advise places to deny people service who don't have their ID card," said Coulson.
It may be a hassle for Soldiers to carry their ID cards at times like morning physical training, but Coulson says PT is one of the most important times for Soldiers to have their ID card.
He also feels shoplifting would be reduced at places on Fort Huachuca such as the Post Exchange and Shoppettes if ID cards were checked before entering the facility.
Checking ID cards is for the safety of the Soldiers, their spouse and dependents. That is why it's required to carry ID cards at all times.