Transgenders Will Now Be Allowed To Serve Openly In The U.S. Armed Forces
Secretary of Defense Ash Carter today announced that transgender individuals will now be able to openly serve in the U.S. armed forces.
The DoD policy announced today also establishes a construct by which service members may transition gender while serving, sets standards for medical care and outlines responsibilities for military services and commanders to develop and implement guidance, training and specific policies in the near and long-term.
“This is the right thing to do for our people and for the force,” Carter said. “We’re talking about talented Americans who are serving with distinction or who want the opportunity to serve. We can’t allow barriers unrelated to a person’s qualifications prevent us from recruiting and retaining those who can best accomplish the mission.”
The policy will be phased in during a one-year period. Effective immediately, service members may no longer be involuntarily separated, discharged or denied reenlistment solely on the basis of gender identity. Service members currently on duty will be able to serve openly.
It’s one thing to allow transgenders to serve openly, its another thing entirely to get the soldiers to accept them and not haze, abuse, or discriminate against them.
Guess only time will tell…
Image via AKM-GSI