Report: Proposal to Ban Transgender Americans from Military Service Would Cost Nearly One Billion Dollars to ImplementBy Adam Polaski • August 10, 2017 • 12:31 pm
This week The Palm Center released a report that drives a gaping hole through President Donald Trump’s stated reason behind his proposal to bar open military service for transgender Americans.
The report found that the cost of implementing a ban on transgender service members, including forcing out the estimated 12,800 currently serving troops, would be nearly one billion dollars – $960 million.
President Trump’s tweets, delivered just over two weeks ago, repeated the blatantly untrue claim that transgender military personnel are a greater expense than non-transgender military personnel. The tweets came just days after the U.S. House of Representatives – in a bipartisan vote – rejected a discriminatory amendment from Rep. Vicky Hartzler (R-Mo.) to prohibit the Pentagon from providing health coverage for medically necessary care for transgender people in the armed forces. Two dozen Republicans refused to support the discriminatory amendment.
The Palm Center report explains:
“If decisions about whether to allow military service by transgender personnel are based on financial considerations, policymakers should take into account the costs of discharging transgender service members, not just the costs of retaining them. We estimate that the financial cost of fully implementing President Trump’s ban on transgender service members would be $960 million providing health care for transgender troops (an estimated $8.4 million). We derive our estimate by multiplying the number of transgender servicemembers (12,800) by the average per-person cost of recruiting and training a replacement for each service member who is discharged ($75,000).”
Several weeks ago Freedom for All Americans Acting CEO and President of Strategy Suffredini said: “We’ve seen barriers thrown up to open service for transgender Americans, and that’s got to change. Transgender service members are making the same sacrifices as their brothers and sisters in arms. They are full of the same pride in our country and commitment to our founding ideals as everyone else. We’ve come a long way in ensuring that everyone is treated fairly and equally in the armed forces, and we shouldn’t for one second let anyone take us backwards.”