The U.S. House of Representatives passed an amendment that would overturn Donald Trump’s ban on transgender people in the military, which has been in effect since April 2019.
As it stands, trans people can serve in the military but only in the sex they were assigned at birth. In order to serve in their true gender identity, they would need to get a waiver.
The new measure, introduced by Rep. Jackie Speier, a Democrat from California, with 28 Democratic cosponsors, was approved by a voice vote alongside dozens of other amendments passed as the House is considering a $1.3 trillion spending package. The amendment would block the use of these funds to implement the current trans service policy.
The same amendment was passed by the Democratic-controlled House last year, when it was also spearheaded by Rep. Speier, but it didn’t pass the Republican-majority Senate. The amendment could suffer the same fate this time around.
Before Trump’s ban, transgender people were free to serve openly since June 2016, thanks to the Obama administration lifting a prior ban on their service.
Since the trans ban was implemented, only two trans service members have been considered for waivers. According to the Pentagon report, 86 trans people in the Army, 59 in the Navy, 13 in the Marines, and 39 in the Air Force have been identified since Trump's ban took effect.
Over two-thirds of Americans think that trans people should be allowed to serve openly in the U.S. military, a poll has found. 71% of respondents said they were in favor of trans military personnel.