During Biden’s first week as president back in January, he signed a wave of executive orders to help undo many of the Trump-era’s harmful policies. One of Biden’s executive orders was to allow trans people to openly serve in the US military.
Now, the Pentagon has finally released its revised codes and rulings that will put Biden’s order into effect. According to NPR, the Pentagon’s new policies include allowing military personnel to transition while serving, to be protected from discrimination based on gender identity, and to create new medical guidelines to help trans people who are serving. The new policies will go into effect on April 30th.
According to Vox, chief Pentagon spokesperson John Kirby told reporters in a press conference. “The secretary of defense strongly believes that the all-volunteer force thrives when it is composed of diverse Americans who can meet the high standards for military service, and an inclusive force that strengthens our national security posture…” Vox also reported that there are roughly 15,000 openly transgender service members currently in the US military.
In 2017, Trump reversed the Obama-era policies on allowing trans people to serve. In an incredibly disrespectful move, Trump couldn’t even hold a formal press conference, but instead announced his decisions on Twitter. The move was a good indicator of the carelessness and lack of respect that Trump was to have for the American people throughout his presidency.
It’s great to see that Biden’s policies are taking effect and will hopefully make America a more equal place for everyone. If you’d like to show your support, you can sign the open letter from Equality California to thank our trans troops.