ACLU Comment on Legislation to Protect Transgender Service Members

September 15, 2017 4:30 pm

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WASHINGTON — The Senate introduced a bipartisan bill today that would protect transgender service members by preventing the Department of Defense from removing currently-serving members of the armed forces based solely on their gender identity. The bill would block President Trump’s ban on transgender individuals serving in the military. The legislation was introduced by Sens. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.), John McCain (R-Ariz.), Susan Collins (R-Maine), and Jack Reed (D-R.I.).

Ian Thompson, legislative representative at the American Civil Liberties Union, issued the following statement:

“With the introduction of this legislation, an important line in the sand has been drawn against President Trump’s discriminatory and unconstitutional ban on military service by transgender individuals. There is widespread, bipartisan opposition in Congress to this shameful policy, including from Senate Armed Services Committee Chairman McCain and Ranking Member Reed.

“Transgender service members, like those represented by the ACLU in our legal challenge, have repeatedly proven that they have the courage and capacity to serve in our nation’s armed forces. It is time for Congress and the courts to stand up for them by roundly rejecting President Trump’s effort to turn back the clock.”

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