Federal Judge Blocks Trump’s Ban on Transgender Service Members

This week, a federal judge took steps to block President Donald Trump’s ban on transgender individuals serving in the U.S. military.

On Monday, U.S. District Judge Colleen Kollar-Kotelly blocked implementation on the grounds that it was likely the transgender service members who had sued the Trump administration over the ban would win their suit.

The ban, which was publicly announced over Twitter in July 2017, cited “tremendous medical costs and disruption” caused by transgender individuals serving in the military, This claim was met with backlash from the LGBTQ+ community.

Trump signed an executive memo that reaffirmed the decision in August.  It directed the departments of Defense and Homeland Security to implement the ban in direct response to the departments’ June 2016 decision to lift the general ban on transgender individuals serving in the army.

One of the main issues raised was the financial cost raised by Trans soldiers – multiple studies have disagreed on the exact number of transgender individuals serving in the military, but have all agreed that their medical care constitutes just a fraction of the military’s overall budget.

Judge Kollar-Kotelly issued an order which required both parties to file detailed reports on how they planned to proceed by November 10, and ordered a return to the policy as it stood before Trump’s reversal.

The Trump administration is expected to appeal the decision.