President Trump signed a presidential memo Friday instructing the Defense Department to stop accepting transgender people who want to enlist in the military.
The memo details Trump’s previous Twitter announcement last month that he would reinstate a ban on transgender people serving in the U.S. military, and officially requests the Pentagon begin implementing the ban.
Trump’s memo bars transgender people from enlisting, but instructs Secretary of Defense James Mattis to further explore how to handle transgender people currently serving in the armed forces.
The memo also orders the Pentagon to stop paying for gender reassignment surgeries, except in cases that are already in progress to “protect the health of an individual.”
It also requests that the Pentagon develop an implementation plan for the ban by Feb. 21 2018, to be put in place on March 23, 2018.
On a call with reporters prior to the memo’s release, a White House official said Trump “spoke passionately” about the freedoms of the LGBT community, but based the policy on a “series of national security considerations,” according to reports. Full Report