By Lt. Col. George WrightMarch 18, 2009
WASHINGTON, D.C. — The Army announced today that Soldiers affected by "Stop-Loss" will begin receiving $500 per month soon, and the Total Army will gradually reduce the number of those affected by the program that involuntarily extends Soldiers beyond the end of their enlistment or retirement dates in units deploying to combat areas.
Under a comprehensive plan to reduce Stop-Loss, the Army Reserve will begin mobilizing units without Stop-Loss in August 2009, followed by the Army National Guard in September 2009. The Active Army will begin deploying units without Stop-Loss beginning in January 2010, according to Lt. Gen. Michael Rochelle, Deputy Chief of Staff for Personnel.
"The Army has used Stop-Loss since 2001 to ensure that units that have trained together remain together in combat, and that they have the qualified and experienced troops necessary for the full spectrum of military operations," Chief of Staff of the Army Gen. George W. Casey, Jr. said.
"With conditions changing in Iraq, a gradual restoration of balance between deployments, and an increase in the size of the Army, we'll now be able to begin weaning ourselves off of Stop-Loss," Gen. Casey said.
There are approximately 13,000 stop-lossed Soldiers across all three Army components. In the Active Army, there are 7,307; 4,458 in the Army National Guard; and 1,452 in the Army Reserve.
"Stop-Loss is a legal tool that has allowed the Army to sustain a force that has trained together as a cohesive element. Losses caused by separation, retirement, and reassignments can adversely affect training, cohesion, readiness, and stability in deploying units. Limiting the use of Stop-Loss balances the need for unit effectiveness against the impact on individual Soldiers and their Families," Gen. Casey said.
Before 2001, the Army used Stop-Loss in 1990-91 during Operation Desert Shield and Desert Storm. At that time, Executive Order 12728, dated August 22, 1990, gave Stop Loss authority to the Secretary of Defense to suspend any provision of law relating to retirement or separation applicable to any member of the armed forces determined to be essential to the national security of the United States. This authority remains in effect.
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