A federal judge in Maryland is the second judge to block President Donald Trump's ban on transgender service members in the U.S. armed forces. Trump's proposed ban involves prohibiting transgender people from serving in the military, as well as from receiving transition-related health care through the military.
Judge Marvin Garbis was struck by the haste and apparent lack of forethought that Trump exhibited this summer when he announced via Twitter his intended new policy, which was a complete reversal of the military's announcement last year regarding the open acceptance and medical care of trans service members.
The Pentagon paid for an active-duty service member's gender transition surgery that took place on Tuesday, NBC News reports. It was the first such gender-reassignment procedure approved under a waiver allowing the United States military to pay for the operation, and it took place in a private hospital.
We know that the soldier identifies as a woman, according to a source who knows the service member, and that she received her Combat Infantry Badge in Operation Anaconda in Afghanistan in 2003.
On Monday, a federal judge in Washington barred President Donald Trump’s administration from banning transgender people from military service.
U.S. District Judge Colleen Kollar-Kotelly ruled transgender service members suing over Trump’s policy likely to win their lawsuit. She mandated a return to the policy in place before Trump announced his ban.
Defense Secretary James Mattis announced the Pentagon will not implement President Donald Trump's directive banning transgender people from serving in the military in any capacity, saying that he will first establish a panel of experts to study the ban's impact. The president tweeted out his plans for the military on July 26, an abrupt reversal of an Obama administration decision which would have allowed them to serve openly.
"Once the panel reports its recommendations and following my consultation with the secretary of Homeland Security, I will provide my advice to the president concerning implementation of his policy direction," Mattis said in the statement. "In the interim, current policy with respect to currently serving members will remain in place."