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Reversing Trump ban on transgender troops, Pentagon releases new policies

Stephanie Miller
Posted at 1:30 PM, Apr 01, 2021

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Pentagon has swept away Trump-era policies that largely banned transgender people from serving in the military and issued new rules that broaden their access to medical care and gender transition.

The new Department of Defense regulations allow transgender people who meet military standards to enlist and serve openly in their self-identified gender, and they will be able to get medically necessary transition-related care authorized by law.

“The revised policies prohibit discrimination on the basis of gender identity or an individual’s identification as transgender, provide a means by which to access into the military in one’s self-identified gender provided all appropriate standards are met, provide a path for those in service for medical treatment, gender transition, and recognition in one’s self-identified gender, and seeks to protect the privacy of all service members and to treat all service members with dignity and respect,” wrote the Pentagon in a statement.

The release of the new guidelines Wednesday coincides with International Transgender Day of Visibility.

The Pentagon says the policies will be effective on April 30, affording the military necessary time to update service-level policies and provide guidance to commanders, service members, medical professionals, and other communities of practice as appropriate.

Until April 30, the department’s interim guidance of January 29, 2021 remains in effect.