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'It's a compromise' | Transgender service member says new memo brings some clarity

Major Jamie Henry says even with discrimination, the new policy on transgender service members at least clarifies some rules

The Pentagon released a memo Tuesday night outlining the new policy for transgender service members.

Army Major Jamie Henry says that even though it's still discriminatory, it at least clarifies some of the confusion from the past two years.

Since President Trump tweeted in July, 2017 that "the United States Government will not accept or allow transgender individuals to serve in any capacity in the U.S. Military," Major Henry has been on edge.

Would she still have a job after serving her country for 17 years?

To her, this memo insures that yes, she shouldn't have to worry about being dismissed before reaching retirement.

“I see this memo as a compromise…President Trump didn’t get what he wanted … The Democrats and a lot of LGBT activists have not gotten what they wanted which is allowing people who have gotten treatment for their gender dysphoria to be able to enter the military," said Major Jamie Henry.

She thinks that the majority of transgender people will still be able to join the military under the new rules.

Here are some of the main distinctions:

Those diagnosed with gender dysphoria prior to the policy goes into effect on April 12 could still get medical treatment without being discharged.

After April 12, a diagnosis of gender dysphoria could be grounds for dismissal if you're already serving.

Also, potential recruits who identify as transgender will have a harder time joining if they have already sought medical treatment.

“So it is discrimination. I think if someone had a hysterectomy for fibroids, they’re still allowed to enter the military, but if they had a hysterectomy for gender dysphoria, they’re not," said Major Henry.

Like with any other disqualifying medical condition, commanders could issue waivers for gender dysphoria diagnoses, so there could be some leeway.

Major Henry encourages fellow transgender service members to remember the strides they've made in the past decade when they feel discouraged.

She's lived through 'Don't Ask, Don't Tell' and the President's threat of an all-out ban.

“I think it gives me personally some relief… so I think there are people in the Pentagon who believe we are not a burden and that we are more benefit to the military staying in the military… so it’s more fighting for people after those of us that are openly transgender in the military for them to have the same opportunities that we’ve had, but my hope is really that by me serving in the military with honor that other people behind me won’t have to suffer the same things that I did," she said.

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