President Joe Biden has officially scrapped Donald Trump’s 2017 ban on transgender people serving in the US military (Pictures: AP)
New US President Joe Biden has officially lifted Donald Trump’s ban on transgender men and women serving in the US military. President Biden signed the executive order repealing his precedessor’s 2017 ban on Monday.
Explaining Biden’s decision to scrap it, a White House spokesman said the president’s order ‘sets the policy that all Americans who are qualified to serve in the Armed Forces of the United States should be able to serve.’
The spokesman added: ‘President Biden believes that gender identity should not be a bar to military service, and that America’s strength is found in its diversity.’ Biden’s new order immediately prohibits any kind of anti-trans discrimination against existing servicemen and women, or trans people who hope to enlist.
Annoucing the now-scrapped ban in July 2017, Trump tweeted: ‘After consultation with my Generals and military experts, please be advised that the United States Government will not accept or allow Transgender individuals to serve in any capacity in the US Military.
‘Our military must be focused on decisive and overwhelming victory and cannot be burdened with the tremendous medical costs and disruption that transgender in the military would entail. Thank you.’
President Trump pitched the ban as a money-saving exercise, although LGBT equality campaigners insisted it was a sop to right-wing Evangelical Christians who had provided heavy support for his election campaign.
He sought to kick out serving trans soldiers, and ban them from having gender reassignment surgery paid for by American taxpayers.
Biden made rescinding the ban a key campaign promise. The new president has also rolled back other controversial decisions, including President Trump’s so-called ‘Muslim ban’ on travelers from Muslim-majority countries.
Biden has also made the US rejoin the World Health Organization and 2015 Paris Accord on climate change, after Trump pulled the US out of both.
Get in touch with our news team by emailing us at [email protected]
For more stories like this, check our news page