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Today, the Trump-Pence administration took steps to implement its ban on open transgender military service. Implementation processes noted in the directive will officially go into effect in thirty days, just under three years after the current policy, allowing open transgender military service, was implemented. All four service chiefs and 41 retired Generals and Admirals have emphatically denounced the claims this Administration is using to justify the ban. 

The American Military Partner Association (AMPA), OutServe-SLDN, and SPARTA, the nation’s three key advocacy and support organizations for our LGBTQ military, veteran, and military family communities, issued the following responses:

“This is the start of an incredibly dark chapter in our nation’s history as the Trump-Pence Administration moves to implement an unconscionable ban on our brave transgender service members and qualified recruits who want to serve,” said American Military Partner Association (AMPA) President Ashley Broadway-Mack. “This horrific policy is even more cruel than ‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell’ because the Pentagon explicitly told these service members it was finally safe to come out — and now they are being targeted for discrimination. We emphatically condemn this unconscionable transgender military ban because it undermines military readiness, destroys unit cohesion, betrays our service members and is based on nothing more than blatant bigotry.”

“By taking steps to implement its ban on open and authentic military service, the Trump-Pence Administration has definitively affirmed that when it comes to our national security, they hold unsubstantiated and discriminatory claims as more important than effectively and efficiently completing the mission,” said OutServe-SLDN Executive Director Andy Blevins. “Our transgender siblings-in-arms and future warriors have proven time and again that they are committed, that they are ready, and that they are able to selflessly and effectively serve our nation. We will continue to fight until open and authentic military service is the law of the land – our service members deserve it and our country needs it.”

“We stand firmly with our members and the thousands of transgender troops serving bravely across the globe,” said SPARTA President Blake Dremann. “While the new policy may go into effect soon, it does not remove or lessen the contributions we continue to provide in the defense of our Nation. We look forward to a time when service members are judged solely on their capability to complete the mission. We will continue to work to make that a reality.”

AMPA, OutServe-SLDN, and SPARTA will be releasing guidance for transgender service members soon, however, troops in need of urgent legal assistance should call 800-538-7418.