Update (8/30): The White House has sent the Pentagon guidance on how to implement Trump’s announced ban on transgender Americans serving in the military. Defense Secretary Mattis now has 6 months to do so. Despite media reports to the contrary, Mattis has not done anything to freeze this policy’s implementation. The current ban on new trans service members will continue indefinitely. All current trans service members will be removed from the military and denied coverage for transition-related surgeries starting March 23, 2018; this is in keeping with Trump’s initial order, which did not call for the immediate discharge of all openly serving trans military members.
On July 26, Donald Trump announced in a series of tweets that the US military will no longer allow transgender troops to serve in any capacity starting in 2018, reversing the Obama administration’s policy permitting transgender troops to serve openly. Trump’s claim that transgender troops’ service will “burden” and disrupt the military contradicts both common decency and objective truth. A Pentagon-commissioned, non-partisan RAND Corporation study found providing gender confirmation treatment to transgender service people would have a minimal effect on the military’s combat readiness. Further, the report found it would cost between $2 and $8 million to provide gender confirmation services to transgender troops; while this amount sounds significant, $8 million is a mere 0.01% of the $598 billion that the US military spent during fiscal year 2015. For comparison, the military spends ten times this amount annually on erectile dysfunction medication such as Viagra.
The implications of this announcement for the roughly 6,000 transgender troops currently serving are uncertain. However, it is clear that members of Congress must speak out firmly and strongly against this discriminatory policy and the bizarre manner in which it was announced.
CALL MCCASKILL (417) 868-8745, BLUNT (417) 877-7814 AND BILLY LONG (417) 889-1800 and ask them to denounce the Trump Administration’s ban on transgender Americans serving in the military.
SCRIPT: 5 calls
Hi, my name is [NAME] and I’m a constituent from Springfield.
I’m calling to ask __________________________________ to denounce the Trump Administration’s ban on transgender Americans serving in the military. These dedicated Americans should have the right to serve their country even if they need special medical care. It is unacceptable for Trump, the Pentagon, and Defense Secretary Mattis to strip them of these rights.
[IF LEAVING A VOICEMAIL: please leave your full street address to ensure your call is tallied]