Court: Military must take transgender service members by January 1

29 November, 2017, 01:18 | Author: Diane Mills
  • Transgender People Can Enlist In The Military Beginning Jan. 1 2018 As Planned Spencer Platt  Getty Images News  Getty Images

In response to a request to clarify a court order against President Trump's transgender military ban, a federal judge has ruled neither Trump, nor the Pentagon, may delay transgender enlistments any further than a January 1 target date.

The memo also gave Defense Secretary James MattisJames Norman MattisNational security departments and agencies have been deprioritized Trump appeals court's decision to partially block transgender military ban Second federal judge halts Trump's transgender military ban MORE a six-month deadline to assess the role of transgender troops who are now serving in the USA military.

In June of 2016, the Department of Defense told transgender members of the armed forces it was safe to come out and serve openly and authentically, and estimates show there are thousands of transgender individuals now serving in the military.

"The Court explained that the effect of its Order was to revert to the status quo with regard to accession and retention that existed before the issuance of the [Trump] Presidential Memorandum", she wrote.

Mattis issued his memo on June 30 to delay transgender enlistments, which were set to begin at that time as result of a policy change during the Obama administration under Defense Secretary Ashton Carter, until January 1 in response to a request from military service chiefs for more time to implement the policy.

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Supposedly, he did not consult any now serving military officials about the futures of what a 2016 RAND study says is somewhere between 1,320 and 6,630 transgender service members in active duty and 830 to 4,160 members on reserve.

Mattis on June 30 delayed the plan, one day before the military was slated to open to transgender recruits per the Obama-era policy. The Trump administration had asked whether her ruling prohibited Defense Secretary James Mattis from extending the delay on new enlistments, arguing that she could not have intended such a prohibition because she had not challenged Mattis's authority to do so. "Any action by any of the Defendants that changes this status quo is preliminarily enjoined". The Trump administration has appealed her injunction. Along with the National Center for Lesbian Rights, GLAD is representing five military servicepeople who are suing the administration over its transgender ban.

A federal court ruled Monday that the US military must move forward with plans to allow transgender recruits by the beginning of 2018. He said the department would use the time to further study the issue.

In a separate case, a federal judge in Baltimore last week also issued a preliminary injunction on the ban, saying that the six plaintiffs who filed that suit had demonstrated its harmful impact.

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