The Equality Caucus Applauds Biden Administration for the Reversal of the Transgender Military Ban

Washington, D.C. – The Congressional LGBTQ+ Equality Caucus today expressed its appreciation for the steps taken by the Biden Administration to reverse the harmful ban on transgender people serving openly in the military. This policy, which has harmed both the individuals impacted and the nation’s security, is overdue for reversal. 

“Anyone willing to serve our country in the Armed Forces should be treated with respect and dignity,” said Equality Caucus Chair David N. Cicilline (RI-01). “I am happy that President Biden has taken action today to allow transgender Americans to serve openly in the military. This decision brings us closer to ensuring that every American enjoys the same rights and opportunities regardless of their sexual orientation or gender identity.”

“From day one, former President Trump’s ban on transgender troops serving in our military was about discrimination and politics – not security,” said Equality Caucus Co-Chair Sean Patrick Maloney (NY-18). “Transgender servicemembers have served our country well and honorably and any suggestion otherwise is just prejudice. This reversal by President Biden is welcome news and shows his commitment to advancing equality for all LGBTQ+ Americans.”

“No one’s gender identity or expression should disqualify them from serving our nation,” said Equality Caucus Co-Chair Mark Pocan (WI-02). “When Donald Trump callously implemented his discriminatory ban via tweet in 2016, over 14,000 transgender people were serving in the military. Today, the Biden-Harris administration rights a wrong and ensures that trans troops can continue serving our country and receive the respect and gratitude they deserve.”

“By reversing the discriminatory trans military ban, President Biden is signaling to all of our troops that their service is welcome and appreciated in the United States of America. To have this be one of his first acts as Commander in Chief is a relief after four years of bigoted attacks against trans people, and it’s a major step toward creating a welcoming culture in our armed forces for all LGBTQ+ servicemembers. This executive order honors the service of brave trans servicemembers who have sacrificed so much in defense of our freedoms and it opens the door for their continued service to our country. All who are qualified to serve should be able to do so – America will be stronger because of it,” said Equality Caucus Co-Chair Mark Takano (CA-41). 

“The folks who’ve dedicated their lives to serving our country should be honored for their service, not discriminated against for their identity,” said Equality Caucus Co-Chair Angie Craig (MN-02). “I’m thrilled that President Biden has signed an Executive Order repealing the cruel and counterproductive ban on transgender people serving openly in our nation’s military. This is a good day for our LGBTQ+ community as we continue our work for equality and justice for all.” 

“After four years of discriminatory, anti-LGBTQ+ policies, we finally have a Commander in Chief who will stand up for the transgender service members who serve our country openly and honorably in the U.S. Armed Forces. President Biden’s executive action will bolster our military readiness and show the world that we are a nation committed to and strengthened by our diversity. As our trans service members have committed to protecting our nation, we will continue fighting to protect their rights here at home,” said Equality Caucus Co-Chair Sharice L. Davids (KS-03). 

“Since the day that the Trump Administration enacted its insulting and bigoted ban on military service, I have worked with my colleagues in the Equality Caucus to reverse it and honor the service of more than 130,000 transgender veterans and 15,000 transgender service members,” said Equality Caucus Co-Chair Chris Pappas (NH-01). “I am pleased that President Biden has taken immediate action to reverse this discriminatory policy and ensure that all Americans who are qualified have the ability to serve openly in the military. This decision upholds our bedrock American values and gives these individuals the dignity and honor they are owed.”

“With one of his first acts in office, President Biden is sending a strong message that his administration will undo the damage caused by his predecessor,” said Equality Caucus Co-Chair Mondaire Jones (NY-17). “Ending Trump’s cruel ban on trans military service is more than about allowing thousands of trans people back into service. It’s a signal to all LGBTQ+ people that we will no longer be treated as second-class citizens under this new administration.”

“Anyone who wants to serve their country with dignity and distinction should be able to do so. This discriminatory ban has prevented thousands of capable Americans from fighting and giving back to their country. I applaud the Biden Administration for taking this important step to ensuring a more equal armed forces and rolling back the discriminatory Trump policies that have hurt the military and the families of soldiers,” said Equality Caucus Co-Chair Ritchie Torres (NY-15).

Please contact Shawn Gaylord at 202-257-8416 or shawn.gaylord@mail.house.gov with press inquiries.

Founded in 2008, the mission of the Congressional LGBTQ+ Equality Caucus is to promote equality for all, regardless of sexual orientation or gender identity. The Caucus, which is led by the nine openly LGBTQ+ members of the House of Representatives, is strongly committed to achieving the full enjoyment of human rights for LGBTQ+ people in the U.S. and around the world. 

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