President Joe Biden repealed a Trump-era executive order barring people who identify as transgender from serving in the military in most cases, as well as preventing military funding from paying for sex reassignment surgeries.
Biden’s executive order, which the White House announced on Monday morning, rescinds one Trump issued in 2017 and implemented in 2019.
The new executive order comes after the Senate confirmed Biden’s pick to lead the Department of Defense, retired Gen. Lloyd Austin, last week in a 93-2 vote. Austin was sworn into office on Friday, making him the first black man to hold the position of Secretary of Defense. During his confirmation hearing, Austin voiced support for rescinding the Trump administration ban on transgender people serving in the military.
“If you’re fit and you’re qualified to serve and you can maintain the standards, you should be allowed to serve and you can expect that I will support that throughout,” Austin said.