December 18, 2020

“The Time for a Fully Inclusive Military is Now”

Statement from PFLAG National Executive Director Brian K. Bond on 10th anniversary of repeal of “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell”

WASHINGTON—On Dec. 22, 2010 then President Barack Obama signed the repeal of the military policy known as “Don’t Ask Don’t Tell,” which banned service of lesbian, gay, and bisexual people. 

Statement by Brian K. Bond, a member of the Obama-Biden White House staff who worked closely on the repeal (2009-2011) and current Executive Director of PFLAG National

“‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell’ was always bad policy. When President Obama signed the repeal 10 years ago, it was the culmination of the combined efforts of scores of former and active duty LGBTQ+ service members whose lives were impacted by this policy, together with LGBTQ+ advocates and allies, congressional champions, and leaders in the Department of Defense. It was a bipartisan effort I am proud to have been a part of, recognizing that it was only a step toward a fully inclusive military force. 

“Yet its remnants, specifically anti-transgender policies, continue to affect our military readiness, unit cohesion, recruitment and retention. PFLAG’s military families, inclusive of openly LGBTQ+ servicemembers and servicemembers whose children are LGBTQ+, struggle to navigate discrimination -- some having moved to find gender-affirming health care, inclusive education, and safe housing. 

“We as a nation must do better by the brave individuals and their families who make up our military force. With the incoming Biden-Harris administration and the progressive will to do the work, now is the time for a fully inclusive military and to completely end ‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell.’”

Laura McGinnis, Media Relations Manager