Move by Trump Administration Violates Court Orders While
Injunction in One Lawsuit Against the Ban Remains in Place
Washington, D.C. – GLBTQ Legal Advocates &
Defenders (GLAD) and the National Center for Lesbian Rights (NCLR) released the
following statements in response to the Department of Defense’s release today
of guidelines for implementing the ban on transgender military service:
Levi, GLAD’s Transgender Rights Project director said:
“Not only does the Trump-Pence transgender military ban violate the
Constitution, but now the administration is also defying a court order. With
brazen disregard for the judicial process, the Pentagon is prematurely and
illegally rolling out a plan to implement the ban when a court injunction
remains in place prohibiting them from doing so.
“In addition to being unlawful, moving forward
with this ban is also deeply immoral and deeply insulting to the many transgender
troops who are bravely serving their country. If permitted to go into effect,
this ban will deprive our military of highly trained and skilled service
members, weaken military readiness, and harm national security. Military
leaders, medical experts, and the vast majority of the American public agree
that our troops deserve gratitude and support, not a slap in the face based on
bias and irrational fears.”
“We will continue our fight in the courts until the ban is permanently blocked,
said Shannon Minter, NCLR legal director.
“We also strongly support the bipartisan efforts of Congressional leaders to
pass urgently needed legislation to protect transgender troops. We urge everyone
who cares about the integrity of our military and the wellbeing of our troops to
contact your representatives and tell them to support this legislation.”
Today’s announcement from DOD disregards the
injunction issued by a federal district court in Doe v. Trump, which remains in effect. On January 4, the D.C.
Circuit Court of Appeals issued an opinion vacating the injunction, but
specifically holding that its decision would not become final until plaintiffs
have an opportunity to seek rehearing by the entire D.C. Circuit, and until any
such petition for rehearing is resolved.
Therefore, the district court’s nationwide injunction prohibiting
enforcement of the ban remains in effect and any move by the government to
enforce the ban before that time is in violation of a federal court order.
Earlier today, GLAD and NCLR filed a brief in the D.C. district court opposing the
administration’s stated intention to moving forward with implementing the ban.