Full repeal of “Don't Ask, Don't
Tell” could begin as early as this summer, according to The
The daily is reporting that military
officials will make an announcement on Friday outlining how it will
proceed on implementing repeal of the 17-year-old law.
Congress agreed to end the law that
bans gay and bisexual troops from serving openly during last month's
lame-duck session, but implementation won't happen until top Pentagon
officials and President Obama certify that the military is ready for
Friday's announcement will outline a
3-month training plan, paving the way for full implementation by this
The plan addresses personnel,
recruiting and other regulations that must be changed.
“The changes affect how troops are
recruited, trained and discharged, as well as how same sex partners
will be treated in terms of various health and other benefits,” the
During Tuesday's State of the Union
told Congress and the nation that the ban would be lifted this year.
“Starting this year, no American will
be forbidden from serving the country they love because of who they
love,” Obama said.
That prompted gay service groups to
call on the president to quicken the pace of implementation.
“We need to make 'Don't Ask' repeal a
reality sooner rather than later,” Aubrey Sarvis, executive
director of Servicemembers Legal Defense Network (SLDN), the largest
group which lobbied for repeal of the law, said in a statement.
“It is also encouraging to see that
the President and First Lady recognize that LGBT troops are very much
part of the fabric of our military families. However, we need to
bring more visibility and awareness to that reality too,” he added.