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Pentagon Issues Memo Detailing Upcoming Treatment of Transgender Recruits

by Countable | 12.21.17

What’s the story?

The Wall Street Journal reports that the Pentagon has issued a memo detailing for the first time their plans for treatment of transgender recruits, who will start being admitted to the armed services after Jan 1 according to recent court rulings.

If you are not familiar with the armed forces, details in the memo such as underwear requirements, height and weight standards and medical testing might be surprising. But the military provides everything for recruits, so the most intimate and mundane details must be planned for.

Per the memo, recruits will be recognized by their preferred gender regardless of whether they have completed gender reassignment surgery. If they do not indicate a preference, they will be assigned the gender indicated on their birth certificate.

Their gender designation will determine their underwear requirements, room and bathroom assignments, height and weight standards and medical exams.

However, trans male recruits who have yet to complete sexual reassignment surgery or begin hormone replacement therapy will be required to take a pregnancy test like female recruits. Trans female recruits will not.

Transgender recruits that have completed sexual reassignment surgery must demonstrate that they have been physically and emotionally stable for at least 18 months before they will be allowed to enlist.

The Justice Department is in the process of appealing the court order that stipulated transgender recruits be admitted starting January 1, and argues that the memo shows the Pentagon is "scrambling" to be ready. Plaintiffs in the case who support the change, however, point to the memo as proof that the military is ready for the deadline.

What do you think?

Do you see the memo as proof positive the military is prepared to accommodate transgender recruits, or not?

Tell us in the comments what you think, then use the Take Action button to tell your reps!

— Asha Sanaker

(Photo Credit: Moody Air Force Base / Creative Commons)

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