A Pentagon spokesman on Friday told
reporters that transgender people can now enlist in the military.
President Joe Biden last month signed
an executive order reversing former President Donald Trump's ban on
transgender troops. But the order did not spell out when transgender
people could enlist. It asked the Defense Department and the
Department of Homeland Security, which oversees the Coast Guard, to
review implementation guidelines.
groups cheer Biden's order reversing Trump's ban on transgender
Pentagon spokesman John Kirby told
reporters that transgender civilians can enlist now.
“If you can meet all the other
requirements – physical fitness and your academics, and all the
other requirements to enlist in a branch of the armed forces –
transgender identity will not be a bar,” he
said. “So today, somebody can walk in and join.”
Kirby also was asked about a statement
from Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin on whether the military health
system would provide transition-related care.
“[Austin] also talked about reversing
the decision by the previous administration about not providing
associated and appropriate medical assistance and care for those
undergoing transition,” he said.
Kirby, under questioning from the
Washington Blade, balked at the idea that the Joint Chiefs,
two of whom appear hesitant about lifting the ban, would undermine
“That's just not going to happen,”
“We're on our way here, and I think
in a couple of months we'll be able to provide more detail,” he
said, referring to Biden's 60-day review.