Voluntary Departure Order Lifted


The State Department lifted the voluntary departure order, effective April 15th.

It was issued by the Joint Support Force, which includes the United States Forces Japan, on Saturday, in regard to military families going back to United States bases in Japan.

Defense Department agrees with the State Department’s determination that Japan doesn’t pose significant risk to United States citizens.

Family members who departed under the voluntary authorized departure authority, or were prevented from returning due to stop movement can return except:

If a family members’ military sponsor is due to PCS within 60 days of the family members’ scheduled return date, families are not authorized to return unless authorized by the member’s service secretary or designee.

Families of civilian employees are not authorized to return if the employee is within 30 days of reassignment.

The service secretaries are authorized to extend departure-related allowances. These include allowances for lodging, food and the $25/day local travel allowance to those families whose sponsor is within 60 days of tour completion- military sponsors. Or, 30 days of tour completion- civilian sponsors.

To allow time to make transportation arrangements, depature-related allowances will terminate on April 25.

Family members who departed under the authorized departure authority, or interrupted travel under the Stop Movement, and decide not to return to their sponsor’s primary duty station, may be authorized to a designated place under early return authority or use the sponsor’s permanent change of station orders to travel to the next permanent duty station, if applicable.

Service member family members who evacuated with a command-sponsored school-aged dependent, and enrolled that dependent in school at their temporary location can remain with their school-aged dependent at their temporary location until the dependent completes his/her current school semester.

Get more detailed information at: State Dept travel advisory.