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Trans people cleared to join the United States military… for now

Trans people cleared to join the United States military… for now

People protesting the trans military ban, which a judge has now blocked.

The United States Justice Department has put Trump’s proposed ban on transgender people in the military on hold.

Starting tomorrow, 1 January, transgender people can begin to enlist in the military. In fact, the Pentagon has already released a detailed policy for recruiting transgender troops. However, the future of trans people in the military remains unclear.

The Department of Justice is reportedly waiting on an independent study by the Department of Defense to be released in the coming weeks before deciding next steps.

‘The Department of Defense has announced that it will be releasing an independent study of these issues in the coming weeks,’ a Department of Justice official told The Washington Blade.

‘So rather than litigate this interim appeal before that occurs, the administration has decided to wait for DOD’s study and will continue to defend the president’s and secretary of defense’s lawful authority in district court in the meantime.’

How it happened

On Friday, 29 December, the Department of Justice withdrew their appeals of three court rulings against the trans ban – one from a federal court in D.C., one from a federal court in Maryland, and one from a federal court in Washington State. They have yet to appeal the decision made by a California court ruling against the ban.

The Trump administration has not appealed the rulings blocking the ban.

Reactions

Jennifer Levi, a lawyer with GLAAD, called the Trump administration’s decision to not appeal these rulings ‘great news.’

‘I’m hoping it means the government has come to see that there is no way to justify a ban and that it’s not good for the military or our country,’ Levi told Reuters.

GLAAD, alongside the American Civil Liberties Union, represent some of the plaintiffs who filed lawsuits against the Trump administration upon the announcement of the ban.

Other LGBTI advocacy groups, such as the Human Rights Campaign (HRC), were also happy about this decision: