by Staff Writers
Washington (AFP) Sept 15, 2017
A bipartisan group of US senators on Friday introduced legislation that would protect transgender troops from being booted from the military for their gender identity.
The move is the latest attempt to block or limit President Donald Trump's decree to bar transgender personnel from serving "in any capacity," reversing a plan launched by his predecessor Barack Obama that would see the military accept openly transgender recruits.
"When less than one percent of Americans are volunteering to join the military, we should welcome all those who are willing and able to serve our country," said Republican Senator John McCain, chairman of the Senate Armed Services Committee.
McCain was one of four co-sponsors of the legislation. He was joined by Jack Reed, who is the senior Democrat on the Armed Services Committee, as well as Democrat Kirsten Gillibrand and Republican Susan Collins.
The legislation would block the Pentagon from firing or denying re-enlistment to any service member based on their gender identity, and require Defense Secretary Jim Mattis to complete a review of transgender recruits enlisting by the end of the year.
"If individuals are willing to put on the uniform of our country, be deployed in war zones, and risk their lives for our freedoms, then we should be expressing our gratitude to them, not trying to kick them out of the military," said Collins.
It is not yet clear when the measure will be voted on. But it could gain significant traction because of its bipartisan nature and the heft of its backers.
Earlier, the Pentagon said transgender personnel can keep serving and can re-enlist well into next year while the officials figure out how to implement Trump's ban.
Pentagon spokesman Colonel Rob Manning said Mattis had directed senior officials to develop a plan to implement Trump's ban, but it doesn't need to be submitted to the president until February 21, 2018.
"The implementation plan will establish the policy standards and procedures to address military service by transgender individuals ... consistent with military readiness, lethality, deployability and budgetary constraints and applicable law," Manning told reporters.
He said the Obama-era policy allowing transgender personnel to serve and receive medical treatment will remain in place for now.
"Transgender service members whose term expires while the (current) guidance is in effect may re-enlist under existing procedures," Manning said.
Trump's transgender ban has also sparked several legal challenges.
OutServe-SLDN -- which works to end military discrimination -- and civil rights litigators Lambda Legal have filed a lawsuit and on Thursday, retired admiral Mike Mullen, former chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, threw his support behind the challenge.
"The military's prior considered judgment on this matter should not be disregarded and we should not breach the faith of service members who defend our freedoms, including those who are transgender," he said in a declaration.
Washington (UPI) Sep 12, 2017
L3 Technologies has expanded its presence in the undersea products market with the acquisition of Adaptive Methods Inc., a systems engineering firm. Under the acquisition announced Tuesday, Adaptive Methods will be called L3 Adaptive Methods, integrated into L3's Sensor Systems business segment. The financial terms of the transaction were not disclosed. Adaptive Methods is ... read more
The Military Industrial Complex at SpaceWar.com
Learn about the Superpowers of the 21st Century at SpaceWar.com
|The content herein, unless otherwise known to be public domain, are Copyright 1995-2017 - Space Media Network. All websites are published in Australia and are solely subject to Australian law and governed by Fair Use principals for news reporting and research purposes. AFP, UPI and IANS news wire stories are copyright Agence France-Presse, United Press International and Indo-Asia News Service. ESA news reports are copyright European Space Agency. All NASA sourced material is public domain. Additional copyrights may apply in whole or part to other bona fide parties. All articles labeled "by Staff Writers" include reports supplied to Space Media Network by industry news wires, PR agencies, corporate press officers and the like. Such articles are individually curated and edited by Space Media Network staff on the basis of the report's information value to our industry and professional readership. Advertising does not imply endorsement, agreement or approval of any opinions, statements or information provided by Space Media Network on any Web page published or hosted by Space Media Network. Privacy Statement|