Pentagon to Consider Lifting of Ban on Open Service for Transgender ServicemembersBy Freedom for All Americans • July 14, 2015 • 9:16 am
Yesterday brought cause for optimism that the U.S. military’s ban on service by transgender Americans may soon be a part of history.
The Pentagon is reviewing plans to lift the ban prohibiting transgender Americans from serving their country in the U.S. Armed Forces. According to The Associated Press, the plan will give officials six months to study the impact the change might have on the military. During this time, no transgender individuals will be allowed to join the military, yet any decision to dismiss a transgender service member will be reviewed by the Department of Defense.
In a statement praising this news, Freedom for All Americans campaign manager Matt McTighe said:
“Today’s news brings us one step closer to equality in our nation’s Armed Forces, but it’s not the final step. It is our hope that after this six month period, the Department of Defense will finally allow transgender Americans to serve our nation in uniform. Every capable American deserves the right to serve openly in the military, regardless of their sexual orientation or gender identity.”
In announcing the review, Secretary of Defense Ash Carter said, “[W]e have transgender soldiers, sailors, airmen, and Marines – real, patriotic Americans – who I know are being hurt by an outdated, confusing, inconsistent approach that’s contrary to our value of service and individual merit.”
One such transgender patriot is Denise Brogan-Kator, who shared her story with us in our Voices for Freedom series. Denise had an impressive career both in and out of the military, but has faced discrimination because of her gender identity.
Research says that there are currently roughly 15,500 transgender Americans serving in the military and some 134,000 transgender veterans in our country.
If you agree that no American should have to be silent about their true identity to serve our country, add your name to our petition in support of updating this outdated policy!