Chapter 1 General 1—6. Policy a. Personnel who qualify as conscientious objectors under this regulation will be classified as such, consistent with the effectiveness and efficiency of the Army. However, requests by personnel for qualification as a conscientious objector after entering military service will be denied when these requests are— 1 Based on preexisting fixed beliefs held prior to enlistment, induction, or appointment. Requests will be denied when they are based on a claim of conscientious objection that existed and satisfied the requirements for classification as a conscientious objector pursuant to 50 USC, App j , and other provisions of law when the applicant failed to request classification as a conscientious objector by the Selective Service before dispatch of the notice of induction, enlistment, or appointment.
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The information obtained from the Selective Service System will be presented to the applicant at the hearing or later.
It will be made a part of the record. Conducting investigations a. The investigating officer will conduct a hearing on the application. The person will be notified in writing as to the time and place the hearing will be held.
A copy of the notification will be attached to the hearing record. If the person fails to appear through no fault of his or her own, the hearing will be rescheduled. The person may not wish a hearing on his or her application. If so, the person may waive his or her right to a hearing by executing a statement to the effect at figure 2—4.
The execution of a waiver of a hearing does not waive the requirement for an investigating officer. Regardless of the desires of the person, an investigating officer will be appointed to comply with the requirements described in this regulation.
The purpose of the hearing is to— 1 Give the person an opportunity to present any evidence he or she desires to support the application. At the beginning of the hearing, the investigating officer will require the person to acknowledge his or her understanding of the nature of the hearing, as stated in figure 2—5, by signing and dating the same.
The hearing will be informal. It will not be governed by the rules of evidence employed by a court—martial, except that all oral testimony presented will be under oath or affirmation. Any relevant evidence may be received. However, statements obtained from persons not present at the hearing need not be notarized or sworn. The hearing is not an adversary proceeding. The applicant may submit any additional evidence desired, including sworn and unsworn statements. He or she may also present any witnesses, but must secure their attendance.
The installation or local commander will render all reasonable assistance in making available military members of the command requested by the applicant as witnesses. Further, the applicant will be permitted to question any other witnesses who appear and to examine all items in the file. A chaplain may feel that his or her appearance might lead to a violation of AR —1. If so, the investigating officer will not require a chaplain, other than the interviewing chaplain para 2—3a , to appear at a hearing.
If the applicant desires, he or she is entitled to be represented by counsel at no expense to the Government. The counsel will be allowed to attend and participate in all hearings and to assist the applicant in presentation of the case. The counsel will also be allowed to examine all items in the case file. A verbatim record of the hearing is not required; however, if the applicant desires such a record and agrees to provide it at his or her own expense, he or she may do so. If the applicant elects to provide such a record, a copy will be made available to the investigating officer, at no expense to the Government, at the conclusion of the hearing.
In the absence of a verbatim record, the investigating officer will summarize the testimony of witnesses. Copies of statements and other documents received in evidence will be made a part of the hearing record. The investigating officer will authenticate the hearing record. At the end of the investigation, the investigating officer will prepare a written report in 4 copies.
The report will contain the items below— 1 A properly executed statement of understanding fig 2—5. Reasons basis in fact and not conjecture for the recommendations will be included. The actions recommended will be limited to the following: a Denial of any classification as a conscientious objector.
If such an indication is present, the investigating officer should obtain a written statement from the person that affirms the willingness to serve. This willingness shows that the person does not object to participation in war in any form. A copy of the case record will be forwarded to the person at the same time that the original is forwarded to the commander who appointed the investigating officer.
The person has the right to submit a rebuttal statement to the record within 10 calendar days. After receipt of the record, the person will complete the statement acknowledging rebuttal rights as prescribed in figure 2—6, along with a rebuttal statement, when appropriate.
The person will deliver the statement s to his or her immediate unit commander within 10 days of his or her receipt of the record. Review of cases a. Applications for conscientious objector status submitted by persons who are under suspension of favorable personnel actions under AR —8—2 will include, from the proper commander, a detailed account of the events that prompted the initiation of the suspension.
The record of the case will then be forwarded through command channels, for recommendations as to disposition of the case based on fact and not conjecture , to the GCMCA who will review the case for administrative correctness.
The GCMCA review will ensure that all of the regulatory requirements have been expeditiously and properly completed in the required number of copies. If there has been undue delay in processing the application, the headquarters of general court—martial jurisdiction will comply with paragraph 2—1b.
The SJA will review the case for sufficiency in law and fact. The SJA will ensure that the applicant has been afforded the procedural safeguards of this regulation. The SJA will make a recommendation for disposition of the case, supported by reasons. Comments by judge advocates below the GCMCA level are gratuitous but, if made, will be addressed by higher headquarters when a conflicting recommenda- tion is made. The case may be returned to the investigating officer if further investigation is deemed necessary; however, all original documents will remain in the case record.
New or revised documents may be added to the case record but not substituted for the originals. At the conclusion of an additional investigation, a new recommendation may be made, if appropriate. If new information adverse to the person is added to the record, or if a new recommendation is made, it will be forwarded to the applicant for rebuttal. The person will execute a new rebuttal form fig 2—6 at this time.
The case record, with the new material added, will be forwarded through command channels to the headquarters that initiated the request for further investigation. Voluntary withdrawal of application A person may desire to withdraw his or her application before final action has been taken. If so, he or she should notify the immediate unit commander, or records custodian see para 2—6b of his or her decision.
Upon such notice, the following actions will be taken: a. The JAGC officer will advise the person of his or her legal rights in the matter and execute, with the person, the statement in figure 2—7 concerning voluntary withdrawal of such application.
The entire application, to include the voluntary withdrawal statement, will be forwarded in 2 copies directly to HQDA as outlined in paragraph 2—8c. Decision authority a. Approval of application. Authority to approve applications for noncombatant conscientious objector status 1—A—0 is delegated to the commander exercising GCMCA over the applicant and the proper level of command listed below for the Reserve Component.
The DACORB will make the final determination on all applications requesting discharge 1—0 and those requesting noncombatant status 1—A—0 that are not approved by the command level listed below—. Louis, 1 Reserve Way, St. Louis, MO — They will request recommendations with supporting reasons 1—0 and disapproval of 1—A—0 or determination and action on approved applications 1—A—0. Delegating authority. Commanders cited in a, above are not authorized to further delegate this authority without prior approval of the Secretary of the Army.
Disposition of approved case 1—A—0 only. Disposition of applications for discharge or applications recommended for disapproval. The authority in a, above, before forwarding a case wherein disapproval is recommended to HQDA, will furnish the person a copy of the disapproval recommendation and the supporting reasons. The applicant will execute the rebuttal rights statement in figure 2—6. The command will make no surrebuttal or further substantive comment. It will be provided to the person through command channels.
Second and later applications a. An application for discharge as a conscientious objector 1—0 or for classification 1—A—0 that has been considered and disapproved by HQDA will not be reconsidered.
However, an applicant may submit second and later formal applications to his or her unit commander. These applications will be considered only if— 1 They are not based upon substantially the same grounds, or 2 They are not supported by substantially the same evidence, as a previously disapproved application.
When a second or later formal application is received, the unit commander will forward the application and any documents submitted with it to the headquarters of the GCMCA specified in paragraph 2—8a. At this headquarters the SJA will review the application to determine whether it is substantially the same as a previous application disapproved by HQDA.
After the legal review and opinion, the approval authorities specified in paragraph 2—8a are authorized to return to a person, without action, any second or later application under this regulation when review reveals that it is substantially the same as a previous application disapproved by HQDA.
If the final decision to approve or disapprove is not authorized to be made at the GCMCA level, the application will be forwarded to HQDA see para 2—8c for final action. Use, assignment, and training a. Except as provided in b, below, persons who have submitted applications see para 2—1 will be retained in their unit and assigned duties providing minimum practicable conflict with their asserted beliefs, pending a final decision on their applications.
Reassignment orders received after the submission of an application will be delayed until the approval authority makes a final determination. In the case of trainees, they will not be required to train in the study, use, or handling of arms or weapons.
The trainee is not precluded from taking part in those aspects of training that do not involve the bearing or use of arms, weapons, or munitions. Except for this restriction, conscientious objector applicants are subject to all military orders and discipline, and regulations to include those on training. However, the provisions of paragraph 2—9 still apply.
Guidelines for Soldiers submitting an application for conscientious objection is as follows: 1 A Soldier assigned or attached to a unit deploying to a new duty station new duty location is the final destination of the deploying unit may submit an application for conscientious objector status.
The unit will process the application as operational mission requirements permit. The Soldier will prepare for deployment and deploy with the unit unless the application for conscientious objector status has been approved by the approving authority designated in paragraph 2—8a.
The foregoing does not apply to Soldiers who are on temporary duty en route on assignment orders for a period in excess of 8 weeks. These Soldiers may apply at their temporary duty location. When a request for conscientious objector status has been denied, the person— 1 Will comply with reassignment orders, and 2 May be assigned to any duties, or 3 May be required to participate in any type of training. If a person is ordered to report to active duty or ADT while an application is being processed and he or she is advised that final action cannot be made before the reporting date for duty, he or she must comply with these orders.
Army Regulation AR 600-43 Conscientious Objector
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