- Thomson Reuters
The White House is planning to issue guidelines for President Donald Trump’s plan to prohibit transgender people from serving in the US military, The Wall Street Journal reported on Wednesday night.
The guidance is expected to be issued in the coming days and would deny prospective transgender recruits and stop funding for procedural medical treatments for transgender service members, The Journal said, citing unnamed US officials.
The directive would also give Secretary of Defense James Mattis discretion over whether to retain transgender troops already serving, according to The Journal, with six months to prepare the ban’s rollout. The Journal said Mattis under the new plan would weigh a transgender person’s ability to deploy as the primary legal basis to determine whether to remove the person from the military.
Trump initially floated the new policy in a series of tweets in July, arguing that the military “cannot be burdened with the tremendous medical costs and disruption that transgender in the military would entail.”
Trump’s statement sparked backlash from LGBTQ-rights groups and caused confusion within the military, as the Pentagon and the White House attempted todefer=”defer”media inquiries on the matter to each other.
After Trump’s stated reversal of President Barack Obama’s directive to end the ban on transgender service members, Reuters reported earlier this month that five transgender service members, including veterans of recent wars, sued Trump, claiming that his tweets violated their rights to due process and equal protection under the law.