President Trump is moving forward with his ban on transgender people serving in the military, with the Department of Defense expected to issue guidance in a few months.
A memo headed from the White House to Defense Secretary James Mattis directs him and his staff to determine if trans troops are able to serve in a war zone or manage months aboard ship, and allow these “deployable” troops to continue serving, the Los Angeles Blade reports, citing a paywall-blocked Wall Street Journal article.
However, the memo also prohibits government spending on transition-related health care for active-duty trans service members, continues to block the recruitment of new trans troops, and directs the military not to renew the enlistment contracts of any trans people serving. It gives Mattis and the Department of Defense six months to come up with a policy within these parameters. The memo may be delivered as early as Thursday or Friday, according to the Blade.
The news of the ban moving forward was met with almost universal derision. VoteVets.org, a progressive organization of veterans, exposed the reality of the ban in a tweet, which was backed up by the popular vote winner of the 2016 election.
There's NO reason for a transgender ban. Military isn't asking for it. Americans don't want it. This is about Trump embrace of hate. Period. https://t.co/OwX3QEgXHV
— VoteVets (@votevets) August 24, 2017
— Hillary Clinton (@HillaryClinton) August 24, 2017