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New Trump order allows some transgender troops to serve

President Donald Trump at the White House Friday Associated Press/Photo by Pablo Martinez Monsivais

New Trump order allows some transgender troops to serve

President Donald Trump issued an order Friday night allowing some transgender troops to serve in the military. The president last year called for a ban on all transgender service members, but four federal courts ruled against him. The Pentagon later agreed to allow transgender individuals currently serving to stay in the military and began allowing others to enlist beginning Jan. 1. The new order, which follows recommendations outlined by Defense Secretary Jim Mattis in February, makes exceptions for those who don’t have a history or diagnosis of gender dysphoria, which could require substantial medical treatment. “This new policy will enable the military to apply well-established mental and physical health standards—including those regarding the use of medical drugs—equally to all individuals who want to join and fight for the best military force the world has ever seen,” White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said Friday. Pentagon spokesman Maj. David Eastburn said the new order has no practical effect, since the military must recruit and retain transgender people according to current law. But the Justice Department said in a statement late Friday it would defend the Pentagon’s authority to “implement personnel policies they have determined are necessary to best defend our nation” and would ask the courts to lift all related preliminary injunctions.

Mickey McLean

Mickey is executive editor of WORLD Digital, oversees audience engagement, and is a member of WORLD’s Editorial Council. He resides in Opelika, Ala.


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