Transgender military ban: Trump administration ban on transgender troops goes into effect

Maricruz Casares
Abril 14, 2019

The Associated Press (AP) wrote in an article last month, under the new rules, now serving transgender troops and anyone who has signed an enlistment contract by April 12 may continue with plans for hormone treatments and gender transition if they have been diagnosed with gender dysphoria.

Those who have been diagnosed with "gender dysphoria" are also "presumptively disqualified" from enlisting unless they have been "stable for 36 months and (are) willing and able to serve in (their) biological sex", according to the Department of Defense.

The Defense Department says people can serve if they remain their biological sex.

Transgender service members who were serving in their preferred gender prior to Friday will be grandfathered in under the Obama administration policy, which allowed transgender individuals to serve openly.

Trump has insisted that there is "too great a risk to military" to allow transgender people to serve.

The policy "depends on directly banning the transgender people who are immediately identifiable and threatening the rest, forcing them to remain silent and invisible", he said.

Pollock signed a statement with two former US surgeons general and two other former military surgeons general, saying they are "troubled by the Defense Department's characterization of the need to undergo gender transition as a "deficiency, ' and by the addition of gender dysphoria to official lists of 'congenital or developmental defects" that include bed-wetting and 'disturbances of perception, thinking, emotional control, or behavior'".

Last month a federal judge lifted a final injunction on the proposal allowing the directive to move forward, the federal government continues to say, "all persons will continue to be treated with dignity and respect".

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Meanwhile, Blake Dremann, president of SPART*A, an advocacy group for actively serving transgender military members, told CBSN that the policy effectively creates two classes of transgender people serving in the military, and forces those who have not been diagnosed to "choose between serving their country and keeping their jobs and seeking the medically-necessary care for gender dysphoria".

"There is no policy that prohibits the ability of a service member to express themselves off-duty in their preferred gender", the dress code guidance said. "Appropriate civilian attire, as outlined in the uniform regulations, will not be determined based on gender".

"With the Pentagon's new ban on transgender individuals serving in the military going into effect on Friday, the AMA is troubled that the DoD characterizes the need to undergo gender transition as a "deficiency, '" they said".

Patricia King, second from right, together with other transgender military members, from left, Navy Lt. Cmdr.

Yet the Pentagon has said the policy doesn't require transgender service members to hide their gender identity. She plans to retire from the military next year after serving 20 years.

The Pentagon asserts that about 9,000 service members self-identify as transgender.

Military chiefs testified before Congress previous year that they found no problems with transgender troops on morale or unit cohesion.

The full transgender policy for military service is available here.

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