Colorado Springs Military Newspaper Group

Fort Carson Mountaineer

Commanding general updates mask policy guidance

Public Affairs Office

Editor’s note: Below is the full message to the Fort Carson community about updated guidance for mask wear signed May 17, 2021, by Maj. Gen. Matthew W. McFarlane, commanding general, 4th Infantry Division and Fort Carson.

The purpose of this memorandum is to update the current requirements for mask wear for both vaccinated and unvaccinated personnel, and to continue to ensure readiness of the Mountain Post in the COVID-19 environment.

Applicability. This policy supersedes General Order 4, dated Feb.19, and Fort Carson Colorado (FCCO) Supplemental Vaccination and Mask Wearing Guidance, dated April 22, is effective immediately, and will remain in effect until superseded or rescinded.


  1. Secretary of Defense memorandum, “Use of Masks and Other Public Health Measures,” Feb. 2, 2021.
  2. Secretary of the Army memorandum, “Use of Masks and Delegation of Authority to Grant Exceptions,” Feb. 24, 2021.
  3. Deputy secretary of Defense memorandum, “Updated Mask Guidelines for Vaccinated Persons,” May 13, 2021.
  4. FCCO General Order #4, Feb. 19, 2021, (hereby rescinded).
  5. FCCO Supplemental Vaccination and Mask Wearing Guidance, April 22, 2021, (hereby rescinded).

Mask wearing guidelines.

  1. Fully vaccinated individuals. Effective immediately, fully vaccinated individuals (any individual who has received a completed series of a COVID-19 vaccine approved for emergency use authorization by the Food and Drug Administration, and 14 days have passed since he or she received the final dose of that vaccine) may, but are no longer required to, wear a mask indoors or outdoors at DOD facilities on Fort Carson except in the following locations:

(a) Medical and dental facilities on Fort Carson

(b) Child Development Centers and schools on Fort Carson.

2. Not fully vaccinated individuals. Personnel who are not fully vaccinated will continue to follow applicable DOD, Army and Fort Carson mask guidance, to include wearing masks indoors, during physical readiness training, during motor pool operations and outdoors when six feet of separation cannot be maintained.

3. This policy does not apply to court-martial proceedings. The military judge will dictate the wearing and removal of masks during these proceedings in accordance with approved exception to policy approved by the commander, U.S. Army Legal Services Agency.

Guidelines for commanders and leaders.

(a) Notwithstanding the above, commanders and leaders are required to inform their personnel and enforce the provisions of this policy and applicable DOD and Army mask guidance.

(b) Commanders are specifically authorized to direct mask wear for all personnel, regardless of vaccination status. Commanders and leaders may make exceptions to this policy that are more restrictive to ensure a safe workforce.

(c) Commanders may recognize subordinate units that meet vaccination goals as defined by the commander. Recognition by commanders may include passes, training holidays or similar liberties. If commanders choose to offer any of these liberties, they must be offered to all the service members within their unit irrespective of vaccination status. However, any service member who is ineligible due to misconduct or other restrictions may be excluded.

Additional guidance includes:

  • Retail Main/Express/Vendor stores — employees and customers are to follow the memorandum
  • Barbers and Stylique — barbers/hair stylist and customers are to follow the memorandum
  • Restaurants — our food service workers still wear masks — customers are to follow the memorandum
  • Optometry/Optical — workers and customers are to wear masks
Commanding general updates mask policy guidance
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