A federal judge in Washington, D.C., has blocked President Donald J. Trump’s attempts to ban transgender people from serving in the U.S. military.
Judge Colleen Kollar-Kotelly of the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia ruled that the ban, which would have taken effect in March 2018, stemmed from “disapproval of transgender people generally.”
“There is absolutely no support for the claim that the ongoing service of transgender people would have any negative effect on the military at all,” Kollar-Kotelly wrote. “In fact, there is considerable evidence that it is the discharge and banning of such individuals that would have such effects.”
Religious Right leaders had urged Trump to institute the ban, reported The New York Times. The groups had originally pushed Trump to ban military payments for transgender troops’ sex-reassignment surgery, but Trump ended up tweeting his administration’s intent to ban transgender troops altogether.
The court’s decision in Jane Doe 1 v. Trump was hailed by members of the transgender community.
“We want to go back to serving,” Logan Ireland, a transgender Air Force staff sergeant, told The Times. “There are troops that work under me, there is work to be done. We want to do it. After all, we are here for our country, not who sits in the White House.”