Today, Out & Equal Workplace Advocates celebrates the long-awaited reversal of the United States Transgender Military Ban. This order, signed by President Joe Biden earlier today, is a welcome demonstration of his commitment to inclusion, to implementing LGBTQ protections, and to reversing the past administration’s discriminatory measures.
“President Biden’s reversal of the Transgender Military Ban is a huge step towards full equality for the LGBTQ community and serves to make us stronger as a nation,” said Erin Uritus, CEO of Out & Equal Workplace Advocates. “It will allow transgender Americans who choose to serve to do so freely, safely, and honorably. With the confirmation of the nation’s first Black Secretary of Defense, General Lloyd Austin, our armed forces – across all ranks – are increasingly looking like the country they so valiantly protect. Their talents will make our military better.”
“This reversal demonstrates that for the world’s largest employer, the US Defense Department, qualifications for a job should always supersede prejudice. This move will no doubt have reverberations across employers, many of which have invested in programs to support transgender and broader LGBTQ inclusion.
“Sadly, our struggle is not over. There are still politicians in this country who seem to think that transgender people, their rights and wellbeing, are props in some political game. Their continuing schemes to limit necessary healthcare and to keep transgender kids off of the sports fields are hateful and hurtful. We will continue to stand for the rights of transgender people. We will always stand for respect and for decency.”
This move by the Biden administration follows several significant actions that the new president took on his first day. The Biden administration’s immediate strides towards LGBTQ equality, progress, and inclusion are a welcome change from the previous politics of discrimination, transphobia, and xenophobia.
The Transgender Military Ban originated on July 26, 2017, when then-President Donald Trump unleashed a series of tweets announcing that “United States Government will not accept or allow transgender individuals to serve in any capacity in the U.S. Military.” President Trump then issued a formal memorandum detailing the ban and Secretary of Defense James Mattis developed measures to implement the ban. After multiple lawsuits and court injunctions, the implementation of those policies began on April 12, 2019.
Out & Equal is the premier organization working exclusively on LGBTQ workplace equality. Through our worldwide programs, Fortune 500 partnerships and our annual Workplace Summit conference, we help LGBTQ people thrive and support organizations creating a culture of belonging for all.