Shortly before the deadline placed on the DOD by the Obama Administration regarding the recruiting of transgender soldiers, Defense Secretary Jim Mattis delayed the implementation by six months.
The new policy was “leaked” to the Federalist from an active duty officer who was recently trained on “Tier Three Transgender Training.” This new policy regardless of the delay from Mattis is being taught to all new recruits. You can view the Tier-Three-Training Power Point here and the Lesson Plan here. The Federalist reports:
The policy allows transgender soldiers to switch their “gender marker” in the Army’s personnel database without undergoing sex reassignment surgery or any other physical changes.
For a soldier to officially change gender requires only some paperwork. A military doctor or civilian medical professional must certify that the transgender person has achieved “stability in the preferred gender” and the soldier must change the gender designation on the soldier’s passport or birth certificate. From that point on, the transgender soldier is “expected to adhere to all military standards associated with their gender,” and “use the billeting, bathroom and shower facilities” of their new gender.
For example, “Vignette Four” of the training module presents the following scenario: “following her transition from male to female (which did not include sex reassignment surgery) and gender marker change in DEERS [DEERS is the military’s personnel database], a transgender Soldier begins using female barracks, bathroom and shower facilities. Because she did not undergo a surgical change, the Soldier still has male genitalia.”
How should troops respond? “Soldiers must accept living and working conditions that are often austere, primitive, and characterized by little or no privacy.”
The lesson offers two points of six “considerations and Responsibilities” necessary for Army personnel:
1-Understand that you may encounter individuals in barracks, bathrooms, or shower facilities with physical characteristics of the opposite sex despite having the same gender marker in DEERS.
2-All Soldiers should be respectful of the privacy and modesty concerns of others. However, transgender Soldiers are not required or expected to modify or adjust their behavior based on the fact that they do not “match” other Soldiers.
Social conservatives want the policy removed immediately, and the American Family Association is calling for Congress to end the Obama mandate and put a bill through congress.
In the year 2017, this is going to be a tricky subject for the military to navigate. According to the DOD, about 250 service members are currently in the process of transitioning and have officially changed their genders. The question right now is should they recruit those in transition and how to handle those that identify as their preferred gender but, don’t wish to transition.
What do you think the DOD should do?