Donald Trump just banned most transgender people from the military

WASHINGTON, DC - MARCH 23: U.S. President Donald Trump speaks to the press about the $1.3 trillion spending bill passed by Congress early Friday, in the Diplomatic Room of the White House on March 23, 2018 in Washington, DC. After threatening to veto the legislation earlier today, President Trump announced he had signed the bill, avoiding a government shutdown. (Photo by Mark Wilson/Getty Images)

President Donald Trump has moved to ban most transgender people from the military.

In an announcement which has outraged activists, Trump stated that “transgender persons with a history or diagnosis of gender dysphoria… are disqualified from military service except under certain limited circumstances.”

The statement, released through the White House, claimed that the policy was “developed through extensive study by senior uniformed and civilian leaders”.

TOPSHOT - US President Donald Trump speaks about the spending bill during a press conference in the Diplomatic Reception Room at the White House on March 23, 2018.  / AFP PHOTO / Nicholas Kamm        (Photo credit should read NICHOLAS KAMM/AFP/Getty Images)


The White House also revealed a memo sent to Trump by Defence Secretary James Mattis last month, in which Mattis said there were “substantial risks” associated with trans servicepeople.

The Defence Secretary said that permitting some of them to serve would mean exempting them from a series of mental, physical and sex-based standards.

He added that it “could undermine readiness, disrupt unit cohesion, and impose an unreasonable burden on the military that is not conducive to military effectiveness and lethality.”

getty mattis

Defence Secretary James Mattis (Getty)

Mattis’s conclusions – which Trump has agreed with – stated that trans people will be allowed to serve “if they have been stable for 36 consecutive months in their biological sex prior to our accession”.

He continued: “Service members diagnosed with gender dysphoria after entering into service may be retained if they do not require a change of gender and remain deployable [within] applicable retention standards”.

And Mattis added that “currently serving service members who have been diagnosed with gender dysphoria since the previous administration’s policy took effect and prior to the effective date of this new policy, may continue to serve in their preferred gender and receive medically necessary treatment for gender dysphoria.”

Protesters gather in front of the White House on July 26, 2017, in Washington, DC. Trump announced on July 26 that transgender people may not serve "in any capacity" in the US military, citing the "tremendous medical costs and disruption" their presence would cause. / AFP PHOTO / PAUL J. RICHARDS (Photo credit should read PAUL J. RICHARDS/AFP/Getty Images)


But, he wrote, those who “require or have undergone” gender confirmation surgery would be “disqualified from military service.”

If there were trans people who had not experienced gender dysphoria, they would be allowed to join the military, he said, but would be required to serve as “their biological sex.”

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