Transgender cadets at military academies told they can graduate but not serve
Transgender cadets in the US military are being told that they can graduate from their training, but are unable to serve.
Two trans cadets in the Air Force and Army academies have been told that despite being on track to pass their exams, they will not be allowed to join the ranks.
The two people, whose identities remain anonymous, came forward with the revelation that will leave them unemployed following their studies.
The decision to not allow trans military graduates to join comes as policies on accepting trans troops are yet to have been created.
The Pentagon promised to establish procedures for accepting new trans troops last year after former Defence Secretary Ash Carter rescinded the ban.
The roll back on the ban meant that it allowed trans troops to serve openly, but the policy for accepting new troops is still yet to be developed.
A spokesperson for the Air Force Academy, Lt. Col. Allen Herritage explained that a trans cadet in his academy would not be allowed to serve despite “strongly recommending” them.
He said: “Currently, there is an Air Force Academy cadet who has identified as a transgender individual.
“The cadet can graduate. But, per the current (Defence Department) transgender policy, this cadet cannot commission into the Air Force.
“However, we are strongly recommending this individual for Air Force civil service as an option for continued service after the academy,” he added.
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Cynthia Smith, a spokesperson for the Army, confirmed that they too had a trans cadet due to graduate.
“We can confirm that a military academy cadet has identified as transgender, however, per the current Department of Defense medical accessions policy, this cadet cannot commission,” Smith said in a statement.
When Carter reversed the ban, he laid out guidance on how policy could be developed.
However, the guidelines were developed under the Obama administration.
James Mattis has since been appointed the new defence secretary and has not signalled any intentions to move forward with the guidance set out.
However, it is believed that trans troops could begin to serve as soon as July after a memo about the Department of Defence assessing its ability to recruit trans people was signed by a top Pentagon official.