US Navy secretary on transgender people in the military: ‘Any patriot’ should be able to serve

richard spencer
US Navy Secretary
Richard V. Spencer.


WASHINGTON (Reuters) – US Navy Secretary Richard V. Spencer
said he would follow directions from the president on
transgender people in the military but believes “any patriot”
should be allowed to serve.

Spencer, speaking to reporters on Thursday on a
visit to Naval Station Norfolk in Virginia, said he would abide
by any policy the Pentagon provides to the armed forces on the
transgender issue.

However, Spencer said he believes that, on a fundamental basis,
“any patriot that wants to serve and meets all the requirements
should be able to serve in our military,” according to news

President Donald Trump announced on Twitter last month that he
would ban transgender people from serving in the military “in
any capacity,” reviving a ban that had ended in 2016.

A week after the announcement, the US Coast Guard commandant,
Admiral Paul Zukunft, offered support for transgender members
of his service.

On Wednesday, five transgender members of the US military,
including Iraq and Afghanistan war veterans, sued Trump over
the transgender ban, saying he made the announcement without
consulting senior military commanders.

(Reporting by Doina Chiacu; Editing by Dan Grebler)

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