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Trump Administration Begins Enforcing Its Transgender Military Ban Amid Ongoing Legal Challenges

Trump Administration Begins Enforcing Its Transgender Military Ban Amid Ongoing Legal Challenges

GLAD says, “That the Trump administration has pushed so hard to be allowed to implement this baseless, immoral and un-American ban is nothing short of shameful.”

NCLR says, “A country that turns its back on the very
individuals who are willing to make the ultimate sacrifice to defend it has
lost its moral bearings”

WASHINGTON, D.C.—The Department of Defense began enforcing the Trump administration’s
transgender military ban today, as four legal cases challenging the
discriminatory policy continue in the courts.

Attorneys from GLBTQ Legal Advocates & Defenders
(GLAD) and the National Center for Lesbian Rights (NCLR), who represent active
servicemembers, students in ROTC and military academy programs, and aspiring
recruits in two cases, Doe v. Trump and Stockman v. Trump, issued the following
statements:

“That the Trump administration has pushed so hard to be allowed to
implement this baseless, immoral and un-American ban is nothing short of
shameful,” said Jennifer Levi, GLAD
Transgender Rights Project Director
. “The administration is deliberately
misleading the American public and the courts by saying that because
transgender people who suppress or hide their transgender status can serve, the
policy is not a ban. But there is no doubt: just as Don’t Ask Don’t Tell was a
ban on gay and lesbian service members, this is a ban on transgender troops. As
of today and until this policy is overturned, transgender people are barred
from service, regardless of their qualifications and ability to meet military
standards. We are already seeing the damage this discriminatory policy is wreaking,
not only on transgender service members and their families, but on the military
itself.”

“A
country that turns its back on the very individuals who are willing to make the
ultimate sacrifice to defend it has lost its moral bearings,” said Shannon Minter, NCLR Legal Director. “Starting
today, any service member who comes out as transgender will face being
discharged simply because of who they are.  And at a moment when every
single branch of the military is struggling to meet its recruitment goals, they
will be forced to turn away qualified individuals who want nothing more than to
contribute their talents, their skills, and if necessary their lives to
serve. As many senior military officials have acknowledged, there is no justification
for this ban, which was imposed on the military by President Trump for
political, not military, reasons. As we continue to fight this discriminatory
policy in the courts, we also call on Congress to do its part to put an end to
it as quickly as possible.”

NCLR and GLAD have
been at the center of the legal fight challenging the Trump-Pence transgender
military ban since filing Doe v. Trump,
the first of four cases filed against the ban, on August 9, 2017.

Recent
polls from Reuters and Quinnipiac have shown that 60%
or more of Americans
agree that transgender individuals who meet military
standards should be able to serve openly.

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