With the addition of two lawsuits on
Monday, there are now at least three legal challenges to President
Donald Trump's ban on transgender troops.
On Friday, roughly a month after the
president called for completely barring transgender people from
serving in the military, the White House issued guidance on
implementing Trump's ban.
Trump's guidance directs the military
to bar transgender people from entering the military and to stop
paying for the transition-related health care of active duty
transgender troops, but stops short of banning transgender troops,
leaving the decision of what the military should do about active-duty
transgender troops to military leaders.
directs Pentagon to ban transgender recruits.)
Lambda Legal and OutServe-SLDN are
representing three plaintiffs – two transgender people who wish to
serve in the military and a transgender woman currently in the U.S.
Army – in their lawsuit filed in federal court in Seattle on
Monday. The case is titled Karnoski v. Trump.
The American Civil Liberties Union
(ACLU) also filed its lawsuit on Monday. Plaintiffs in the case,
Stone v. Trump, are five active-duty transgender service
members. The case was filed in Maryland.
In both cases lawyers argue that
Trump's ban violates the equal protection and due process rights of
transgender people under the Fifth Amendment. The lawsuit filed by
OutServe-SLDN and Lambda Legal also argues that the ban violates the
free speech rights of transgender people.
The Department of Defense conducted a
year-long review before it lifted the previous ban in 2016.
A third lawsuit was filed earlier this
month by the National Center for Lesbian Rights (NCLR) and GLBTQ
Advocates & Defenders (GLAD) in federal court in the District of