Press Releases

Injured SEAL, Others Continue to be Punished by U.S. Navy in Violation of Court Order Law Firm Tells Judge

February 1, 2022

News Release
For Immediate Release: 2.1.22
Contact: Lacey McNiel,
Direct: 972-941-4453

Injured SEAL, Others Continue to be Punished by U.S. Navy in Violation of Court Order Law Firm Tells Judge
Elite service members seeking religious accommodation to Covid-19 vaccine mandate face continued harassment, punishment in violation of injunction issued by court

Ft. Worth, TX—On Monday, attorneys with First Liberty Institute and Hacker Stephens LLP submitted documents to the United States District Court for the Northern District of Texas describing the many ways the U.S. Navy is violating a preliminary injunction barring it from punishing Navy SEALs and Naval Special Warfare personnel for seeking religious accommodation to the Navy’s vaccine mandate.  The motion requests that the court set a hearing and order the Navy and Department of Defense to show cause as to why they should not be held in contempt of the court.

You can read the motion here.

“It is reprehensible that the Navy would deny health care to a Navy SEAL suffering the effects of traumatic brain injury.  Despite the Court’s clear order prohibiting this kind of vindictive abuse, the Navy continues to punish and harass these warriors,” said Mike Berry, General Counsel for First Liberty Institute. “The Navy continues to deny our clients training and deployment opportunities and is assigning these soldiers menial tasks instead of allowing them to defend our country.  This religious discrimination must stop.”

The court pleading states “Navy SEAL 26 continues to be denied permission to travel to a treatment program for traumatic brain injuries, which this Court already called an ‘egregious example’ of harm suffered by Plaintiffs. Continuing to ignore this SEAL’s medical needs, even in the face of the Court’s explicit recognition of the harm to this SEAL in the preliminary-injunction order, is simply inexcusable.”  SEAL 26 offered to pay for travel to treatment at his own expense, but even that was denied after “multiple high-ranking Naval officers in SEAL 26’s command began calling the treatment center and asking if it would deny treatment to someone who is unvaccinated,” delaying his request long enough for him to lose his spot at the treatment center.

In another example, a client has been kept for four months at a training location where he was only supposed to be for four weeks andis required to get special permission from the Commanding Officer to leave the base for any reason, even to get groceries or fill his car with gas.”  In addition, SEAL clients are being denied training and deployment opportunities.


About First Liberty Institute

First Liberty Institute is a non-profit public interest law firm and the largest legal organization in the nation dedicated exclusively to defending religious freedom for all Americans.

To arrange an interview, contact Lacey McNiel at or by calling 972-941-4453.

Social Facebook Social Instagram Twitter X Icon | First Liberty Institute Social Youtube Social Linkedin

Terms of UsePrivacy PolicyState DisclosuresSitemap • © 2024 Liberty Institute® is a trademark of First Liberty Institute