News (USA)

Navy considers elevating discharge requirements for transgender service members

Sailors man the rails aboard the aircraft carrier USS George Washington.
Sailors man the rails aboard the aircraft carrier USS George Washington. U.S. Navy

Via Stars and Stripes:

The Navy may soon join the Air Force and the Army in requiring high-level approval to separate transgender service members from the military, military officials said Tuesday.

“As previously stated, the Navy is looking to elevate the administrative separation authority for transgendered personnel to ensure that this important issue receives the right level of review,” Navy spokesman Lt. Cmdr. Ed Early said in a statement Tuesday. “Any proposed changes would not affect the level of discharge authority for other instances of administrative separation.”

There is no timeline for a decision, Early added.

If the Navy takes such a step, it would leave the Marine Corps as the only service to not change its policy.

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The Air Force announced a policy change last week requiring discharge decisions on service members who identify as transgender to be reviewed by high-level officials at Air Force headquarters. Those decisions have been made by doctors and unit commanders.

The Army was the first to announce a similar policy change in March.

“The Marine Corps is not currently reviewing changes to the decision-making authorities for the involuntary separation of any of our Marines,” according to a statement in response to a Stars and Stripes query.

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