The Pentagon will allow people who are transgender to enlist in the military starting Jan. 1, despite the Trump administration’s opposition, The Associated Press reported.
The decision counters President Donald Trump’s demand to ban the enlistment of transgender individuals that the administration sought to implement after an earlier injunction against the president's order.
Two federal courts have already ruled against the ban, CBS reported.Therefore, the Pentagon is complying with those federal court rulings. An area of one ruling required the deadline of enlistment to be on Jan. 1, and the Pentagon’s move signals the government’s likelihood of losing the legal battles, the AP reported.
Potential recruits must pass a set physical, medical and mental criteria in order to join the military, which means those recruits can still be disqualified if those conditions are not met.
Recruits that are transgender who are receiving hormone treatments must be stable on those medications for 18 months and must be free of impairment in social or occupational areas.
To clarify, these requirements are not new and are similar to the concerns the Obama administration had in place when the ban on transgender service was initially lifted in June 2016. Also, those restrictions are not specific to people who are transgender and are put in place for recruits with various medical and mental conditions.
President Trump had initially announced the reinstatement of the ban on July 26th.