Trump’s Trans Military Ban Was Just Blocked — For the Third Time
As of Jan. 1, the military will be required to make room for trans troops.
In the third ruling of its sort, a federal judge blocked major parts of US President Donald Trump’s ban on transgender individuals serving in the military on Monday, Vox reports.
The ruling paves the way for transgender troops to re-enter the military beginning Jan. 1, despite attempts by the Trump administration to push back that deadline, according to the report.
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Monday’s ruling, which was made by US District Judge Colleen Kollar-Kotelly, clarified her previous ruling that Trump could not ban transgender individuals from serving in the military because the administration had provided “no solid evidence” in favor of the policy, AP reported.
Her initial injunction did not include information about whether Defense Secretary James Mattis could change the date by which the military will recruit trans soldiers — or whether the military would be obligated to pay for gender reassignment surgery.
On Monday, she ruled that Mattis does not have the power to change that deadline.
Monday’s decision also comes a week after a different court ruled that the military must pay for gender reassignment surgery and hormone therapy. US Senator Kirsten Gillibrand hailed that ruling as a “victory for equality.”
According to a UCLA study, roughly 15,500 transgender individuals serve in the military. By some estimates, providing gender reassignment surgery would require increasing the military’s health care budget by just 0.04% to 0.13%.
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