Civilian retirees need Real ID to enter Fort Drum

Published: Aug. 30, 2023 at 4:45 PM EDT
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FORT DRUM, New York (WWNY) - Changes are coming for civilian retirees when trying to get onto Fort Drum or any military installation.

What they use right now is called a Department of Defense Civilian Retiree Identification Card.

Those cards expire at the end of August.

Starting Friday, retirees must show a new Real ID.

It’s because of security enhancements at Fort Drum gates and because the Real ID Act, passed by Congress in 2005, requires the termination of the DoD ID cards.

If you don’t have your Real ID yet, or you are waiting for it, you can continue to access Fort Drum by showing your driver’s license and your retirement document.

This does not affect retired soldiers or their families.

Here’s what Fort Drum is telling people through its Facebook page:

Update for Army Civilian Retirees!

Starting September 1st, DoD Civilian Retiree ID cards will no longer be valid or accepted as identification at federal installations. Here at Fort Drum that means that all civilian retirees will need to stop at the Visitor Control Center and submit to a voluntary background check to obtain a pass to the installation.

Civilian retirees possessing REAL ID compliant identification and retirement documents (SF-50) as proof of eligibility, can complete the brief background check and register with VCC staff. Once registered, retirees will have access for a period of one year and may enter at any gate. When entering Fort Drum, you’ll just need to present your REAL ID and SF-50 to gate personnel. At the end of the year, you can re-register at the VCC and submit to the same voluntary background check.

Civilian Retirees without REAL ID can also stop at the Visitor Control Center to voluntarily submit to a background check and receive a one-day visitor pass upon each visit to the installation.

Recommend gaining a REAL ID to access the 1-year pass!

Go to to learn how to apply for a REAL ID License.