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Mattis: Transgender Troops Can Continue to Serve Pending Study

Mattis: Transgender Troops Can Continue to Serve Pending Study
(Alex Brandon/AP)

By    |   Tuesday, 29 August 2017 09:02 PM

Transgender military forces will be allowed to continue serving pending the results of a study, Defense Secretary James Mattis announced Tuesday.

"Our focus must always be on what is best for the military's combat effectiveness leading to victory on the battlefield," he wrote, saying he's establishing a panel of experts from the Pentagon and Homeland Security.

"Once the panel reports its recommendations and following my consultation with the secretary of Homeland Security, I will provide my advice to the president concerning implementation of his policy direction," Mattis said in his statement.

"In the interim, current policy with respect to currently serving members will remain in place."

The announcement follows a decision, announced by President Donald Trump in a tweet in July declaring transgender service members can no longer serve in the military, effectively reversing an Obama administration policy. The order also affects the Department of Homeland Security, which houses the Coast Guard.

Last week, he ordered the military on Friday to reject openly transgender people as new recruits but authorized Mattis to decide how to handle transgender personnel already serving in the Armed Forces.

The ban would take effect next year. It also orders a halt to the use of Pentagon resources to fund sex-reassignment surgeries for military personnel.

Mattis' move buys time for the Pentagon to determine how and if it will allow thousands of transgender troops to continue to serve, whether they will receive medical treatment, or how they will be discharged, USA Today reported.

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Transgender military forces will be allowed to continue serving pending the results of a study, Defense Secretary James Mattis announced Tuesday
james mattis, transgender troops, continue, serve, pending, study
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2017-02-29
Tuesday, 29 August 2017 09:02 PM
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