Mayors Against LGBT Discrimination Respond to Trump Ban on Open Service for Transgender People

President Donald Trump announced this week in a series of tweets that he is re-instating the ban on open service in the military by transgender Americans, stating that transgender individuals will not be allowed to serve “in any capacity.”
Mayor Ed Lee of San Francisco issued the following statement on behalf of Mayors Against LGBT Discrimination, a broad-based coalition of more than 250 mayors across the country who support fairness and freedom for all LGBT people:
“This is just the latest example of the discriminatory and divisive policies being crafted by the Federal Administration. This nation’s guiding principles promise equal protections and rights for everyone, which includes the honor of joining the military and sacrificing for one’s country. These are brave, honorable individuals who seek to serve their country by putting their lives on the line in defense of others. To deny them those rights based on their gender identity is bigoted and marks a betrayal of American values.”
There are currently approximately 15,000 transgender service members already serving in the armed forces. It is unclear when or how the new policy will be implemented – the Pentagon has said it will not make any policy change until President Trump discusses further with the Department of Defense.
Last year, the Obama Administration ended the ban on transgender Americans serving openly. Earlier this month, the Pentagon announced that the ban on transgender people enlisting in the armed forces would be extended until the end of this year. Just last week, the Republican-dominated U.S. House of Representatives rejected a discriminatory amendment that would have stripped transgender service members and their families of critical health care coverage.