A study funded by the Department of Defense found that two-thirds of all active duty personnel, including respondents from the Army, Navy, Airforce, and Marines, supported the idea of serving alongside transgender service members. The report, which was published by the scientific journal Sexuality Research and Social Policy on Feb. 18, included data from almost 500 participants collected from August 2017 to March 2018. When asked “should transgender people be allowed to serve in the military?” 66 percent of those surveyed chose “yes.” (The remaining options, “no,” and “unsure,” were both lumped together in the study.) A further breakdown of the data, which detailed responses from individual military branches, showed over half of respondents also chose “yes,” indicating the belief that trans personnel should be allowed to serve in armed forces has a roughly similar distribution across the board.
The study was commissioned by the Pentagon before the exclusion of trans Americans from serving in the U.S. military went into effect in 2019. “Arguments against integration have been historically disproven through research examining the integration of women, racial/ethnic minorities and [lesbian, gay and bisexual] persons into the U.S. military,” the authors of the study concluded.