One Equal World

Transgender People May Now Serve Openly in the Military

Posted on: July 5, 2016

Image: Shutterstock

Image: Shutterstock

Ash Carter, Secretary of the Department of Defense, has announced that transgender individuals will be able to openly serve in the United States military without qualification, and will receive medical coverage for transition within their military provided insurance. They cannot be discriminated against in any way, and will be held to the same standards as any service member.

While the right to serve openly in the military may not be everyone’s cup of tea, neither is getting married, but both stand as significant achievements for people in the LGBT community. As Carter pointed out, the military needs the best people it can get, who are willing and able to fight for their country, and that includes transgender individuals. The stigma on transgender individuals, or anyone else for that matter, from serving openly or at all, tells those marginalized people that they are not truly citizens of the United States. There are many great rights that come with being a citizen, but being told that you can’t serve in the military is basically being told that we don’t trust you with our security.

Research shows that there are already a number of transgender service members in the military, and that most of them are accepted by their units and commanders, but even then they faced hardships that their peers did not. Medical services were a big one, as there were not clear policies for dealing with things like hormone therapy or other medical necessities. That influenced the decision, but the general attitude of the United States has changed too, and although transgender people still face huge obstacles, employers and society in general is increasingly embracing them. As more companies include gender identity in anti-discrimination policies, and more insurance companies begin covering transition treatments, it has become impossible to justify not doing the same in the military. And now they don’t have to.

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1 Response to "Transgender People May Now Serve Openly in the Military"

[…] Transgender People May Now Serve Openly in the Military […]

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