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Navy Installations Transition to DBIDS ID Cards for Federal Civilian Retirees Aug. 31

28 August 2023

From Patrick Gordon, NAS Patuxent River Public Affairs Officer

The Department of Defense earlier this year announced changes to base access procedures for federal civilian retirees, with new credentials required for base access.
The Department of Defense earlier this year announced changes to base access procedures for federal civilian retirees, with new credentials required for base access.

The Secretary of Defense for Personnel and Readiness issued a memorandum in February canceling the Department of Defense (DoD) civilian retiree identification card effective Aug. 31, 2023. New DoD civilian retiree IDs will no longer be issued, and federal civilian retirees seeking access to Navy installations, including Morale, Welfare, and Recreation (MWR) facilities, will now need to apply for a Defense Biometric Identifications Systems (DBIDS) ID card. The Navy followed suit by issuing instructions to Navy installations regarding the change.

“Previously issued DoD Civilian Retiree ID cards will remain valid through 31 August 2023, at which point they will no longer be accepted as a valid form of ID,” stated NAVADMIN 105/23, signed by Vice Adm. Ricky Williamson, Deputy Chief of Naval Operations for Fleet Readiness and Logistics. “Personnel shall coordinate with the respective Visitor Control Center (VCC) where they will be processed in accordance with local policy. DBIDS credentials will be issued to eligible personnel upon positive identification of the individual, visual inspection of an SF-50 indicating retirement from civilian government service, and vetting for fitness.”

Per NAVADMIN 105/23, the limited use of MWR activities by DoD civilian retirees will remain at the discretion of the installation Commanding Officer. Retired DoD civilians can obtain a DBIDs card through the NAS Patuxent River VCC in accordance with instruction, which they would use for base and MWR facility access as they would a DoD ID.

“Pax River has a large civilian population compared to some other Navy bases, so our VCC staff have been made aware to expect more DBIDS applications as a result of this policy,” said LT Charles Whittenton, NAS Patuxent River Security Officer. “The DoD civilians who have served our country to retirement and wish to access the base will still be able to do so, just with a different credential in accordance with DoD and Navy policy.”

To streamline the process, eligible personnel can choose between two options for the required background check. They can either complete the SECNAV Form 5512/1 and bring it to the VCC, or pre-register their information online using the DBIDS pre-registration portal and bring the accompanying QR code to the VCC. The DBIDS credentials issued to eligible personnel will include "MWR Facility Privileges" on the back in the "Remarks" box and will be categorized under "Facility Use" during enrollment.

The validity of DBIDS credentials extends up to three years. 

“It's important to understand that an individual will need to provision their DBIDS credential at each installation they intend to access, and access at every installation is at the discretion of that installation’s Commanding Officer,” added Whittenton. “However, the background check component of enrollment will have already been completed during the initial installation visit. This means that subsequent installations will primarily focus on establishing identity and purpose, potentially granting access based on the commanding officer's discretion.”

Visit for more information on acceptable forms of identification. 

For the background portion, eligible personnel are encouraged to either complete the SECNAV Form 5512/1 and bring to the VCC or pre-register their information online at!/ and bring the accompanying QR code to the VCC in order to streamline wait times at the Navy installation’s VCC.

For questions regarding base access at NAS Patuxent River, contact the NAS Pax River VCC at (301) 342-3231. 

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