FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Date: June 26, 2016
Media Contact: Sue Fulton
SPARTA Hails Lifting of Transgender Ban
Largest Organization of Transgender Military Members Releases Comprehensive Guide to Understanding Implementation
Washington, DC – SPARTA, the largest organization of actively-serving transgender military members today celebrated the Pentagon’s announcement confirming that transgender Americans will be able to serve their country on equal footing with other service members.
“Secretary Carter today fulfills his promise that every American who is qualified to serve will be allowed to serve, said former Army Captain Sue Fulton, President of SPARTA. “The thousands of transgender soldiers, sailors, airmen, Marines, and Coast Guardsmen – and their commanders – have one less burden on their shoulders today. We are grateful to the military and civilian leaders in the Department of Defense who worked so hard to get this right.”
“Thanks to our leaders, this policy change allows transgender service members to continue to serve the greatest military in the world, fully acknowledged by their fellow troops,” said Navy Lieutenant Blake Dremann, SPARTA Board member. Dremann serves in the Pentagon.
“I have always been proud to be a Soldier,” said Army Captain Jennifer Peace, “but the inclusion of transgender service members makes me even more proud to serve.”
“As a retired Army sergeant major, Airborne Infantry, and a transgender woman, I am proud of our leadership and our Armed Forces today,” said SGM (retired) Jennifer Marie Long. “Transgender Americans like me are competent, capable soldiers, and now they no longer have to pretend to be someone else.”
Brynn Tannehill, primary author of SPARTA’s comprehensive guide to transgender military service (link below), had this to say: “This has been long fought for, and long-awaited. Through it all, members of SPARTA have exemplified the honor and professionalism which our country has come to expect from its military. I am proud of what they have accomplished, and look forward to seeing all they accomplish going forward serving openly with dignity, honor, and pride.”
Tannehill is an Annapolis graduate was a Lt. Commander in the US Navy.
Here is a link to a 147-page Implementation Guide outlining each of the issues in detail, with supporting references to the many other military and similar organizations that have successfully integrated transgender people. This document was provided to the Department of Defense over a year ago, to provide information and education.
About SPARTA: Founded in 2013, SPARTA is an association of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender people who currently serve or have served in the U.S. armed forces and their families. Our mission is to advocate for and support our actively serving LGBT service members, veterans, and their families. As a membership organization, SPARTA exists by and for the LGBT military community. The name SPARTA originated as an acronym for “Servicemembers, Partners, and Allies for Respect and Tolerance for All.”