By: Paul Goldberg, Staff Writer
WASHINGTON, D.C — Transgender Military Ban set it motion by president Trump, fell off the wagon today when LGBT rights advocates scored a victory today when a federal court decision ruled on Monday, Oct. 30, that the Pentagon is banned from enforcing the Trump administration’s executive order to ban from the US military, transgender troops.
In response to a lawsuit filed by GLBTQ Legal Advocates and Defenders and the National Center for Lesbian Rights, Judge Colleen Kollar-Kotelly on the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia, issued a preliminary injunction on the Transgender military ban, requiring the Pentagon to “revert to the status quo” set in June 2016, when former Defense Secretary Ash Carter announced transgender troops could no longer be kicked out for their gender identity.
Sarah Kate Ellis, president of GLAAD, an LGBTQ media advocacy organization, rejoiced over the decision calling it “a major step forward in exposing President Trump’s policy as a hate-fueled attack.” said Ellis. “Today’s victory reflects what a majority of Americans have been saying: that transgender service members should be thanked and not relegated to second-class citizenship,” said Ellis.
The American Civil Liberties Union, which has their own lawsuit pending in Maryland on behalf of six currently serving transgender troops, said that they had predicted Monday’s decision. “The federal courts are recognizing what everyone already knows to be true: President Trump’s impulsive decision to ban transgender people from serving in the military service was blatantly unconstitutional,” said Joshua Block, senior staff attorney with the ACLU.
JRL CHARTS reached out to the Pentagon’s communications office for comment but by posting time, we have yet to receive response.
LGBT military advocacy groups state that there are about 15,000 transgender troops who are currently on active duty. The American Military Partner Association, which represents LGBT military spouses, said that Judge Colleen Kollar-Kotelly decision “gives our military families hope that justice will ultimately prevail.”
I also reached out to the White House for comment but they declined instead, referring me back to the Pentagon.
The fight isn’t over as legal experts have told JRL that they expect the White House and/or the Pentagon to appeal the ruling to the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals.
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