Thursday, September 20, 2012

DADT Repeal Anniversary Observed

This is the first anniversary of repeal of the discriminatory “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” law & we must acknowledge the smooth transition the military has made in allowing gay, lesbian & bisexual Americans to serve openly in the military. Now we must call on the White House, Pentagon & Congress to embrace & advance the final work necessary to achieve full LGBT equality in the Armed Forces. Aubrey Sarvis Army veteran & Servicemembers Legal Defense Network (SLDN) Executive Director stated, “We cannot forget even as we celebrate this day that there is still work to be done in order to reach full LGBT equality in the military. Even now, families of gay & lesbian service members, veterans, are treated as second-class citizens, unable to receive the same recognition, support & benefits as the families of their straight, married counterparts. We must repeal the Defense of Marriage Act & all federal laws that prevent the military from providing the same support for all service members & their families. We cannot have two classes of service members.” Also among the issues remaining to be addressed is that of transgender service. Currently medical regulations prohibit transgender service though OutServe counts among its more than 6000 members a number of actively serving transgender military personnel. "It's a positive step that gays & lesbians serving our country can no longer be discharged just for who they are or whom they love. Sadly, that is not true for transgender people, who have served & are serving honorably while sacrificing who they are. Today we are thinking of our trans brothers & sisters, and commit that we will fight for their equality as well,” said Sue Fulton, Executive Director of Knights Out, an organization of West Point alumni, staff & faculty united in supporting the rights of lesbian, gay, bisexual & transgender Americans. She is also a member of the OutServe board of directors. So we’ve come a long way but we still have a long way to go for full LGBT equality in the military. Updates to Come..:) OUTTAKE VOICES™ NOW ON HUFFINGTON POST...:)
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