The American Psychiatric Association and American Psychological Association both say the report from Defense Secretary Jim Mattis that recommends banning transgender people from serving in the U.S. military “misrepresents” current healthcare treatment for trans folks.
The Pentagon’s claim that the scientific evidence is at best “unclear” for treatment of gender dysphoria, the condition of being unhappy in your current gender, and that treatment may not relieve serious risks such as suicide is not the current medical consensus, according to the American Psychiatric Association and American Psychological Association.
“That’s really not true and it’s certainly not true among the actual experts who treat these people,” said Dr. Jack Drescher, a psychiatrist and psychoanalyst who is a distinguished fellow at the American Psychiatric Association. “We shouldn’t assume just because somebody has a psychiatric diagnosis that they are not able to function and there is no reason to believe, based on what we know of people who have gotten treatment for their gender dysphoria, that they are any different.
“If people get treatment for their gender dysphoria, then they are doing fine,” he said.
Mattis’ report issued last month basically bans anyone diagnosed with gender dysphoria or anyone who is undergoing hormone therapy/gender reassignment surgery from enlisting in the armed forces.
Mattis’ plan allows for current trans service members to remain on active duty as long as they don’t require treatment.
The proposed policy change remains on hold due to four separate federal courts which have ruled the new policy unconstitutional.