Space and Air Force launch the LGBTQ Task Force

But this was not always the position at the Ministry of Defense, as Lauderback knows well. In the same year the Air Force “don’t ask, don’t tell” came into effect. “I have first-hand knowledge of what it means to work in a non-inclusive environment, and I can describe that as personally annoying, challenging, and sometimes offensive,” she said. “I place my desire to serve the nation above my desire to lead a normal life.”

Years later, when President Barack Obama removed the phrase “don’t ask, don’t tell,” Luderback wasted no time. “There was no way to hide at that point,” she said earlier this month at a storytelling event hosted by the Air Force. “Whoever asks, I would say.” The removal policy gave her confidence because she did not Technically It doesn’t matter if the listener is on board with her identity. She added, “Someone supported me if someone did not agree with me or discriminated against me.”

But these policies on paper have not been implemented so simply during the past decade. at 2020 report at Gender and Social Policy Research, Researchers from the Defense Department-funded Military Acceptance Project analyzed the results of 37 in-depth interviews with personnel at bases around the world. The authors write: “Half of the participants feared that the military environment, both institutionally and personally, did not yet include homosexuals.

else a study From the project published in Traumatic Stress JournalIn 2007, she surveyed a larger group and found that about 56 percent of straight sex-compatible people in service experience sexual harassment. But about 80 percent of lesbian, gay, and bisexual service members do so, as well as about 84 percent of transgender people.

Lauderback said she wasn’t fully aware of the challenges her LGBTQ peers face, because her experience with getting out – and getting out – went so smoothly. But as she was instructing others about their exit, she realized something: “They were still afraid of it,” she said. And she began to think, “Maybe this isn’t as good for everyone as it was for me. So I wanted to see if a group was needed.” Last fall it launched an investigation, and this spring, LIT.

INET was born around the same time. “We want all pilots and guardians to feel a sense of belonging,” says Adams. “That takes work.”

One of the hardest things a LIT team will face is addressing the concerns of its disparate members. “They are very different groups, and we think of them as a homogeneous group,” says Carl Castro of the University of Southern California, who helped lead the Military Acceptance Project. “In general, the LGB members are doing a good job,” Castro continues. “They can do a better job, but they don’t do that bad.” Castro says things are more difficult and different for transgender people, who, for example, currently need permission from a leader to initiate the transition.

The military has an interest in the making All From these groups you feel welcome. “Their main priority is the readiness, the army’s readiness to act at any moment,” says Jeremy Goldbach of the University of Southern California, who is also the leader of the Military Admissions Project. “And when you have societies that suffer from neglect, marginalization, and being treated differently, it makes it difficult for people to feel that they can work in loneliness.”

LGBTQ service members do not specifically do this Wants To be treated differently. According to his research, Goldbach says, “Their measure of fairness was:“ Judge me for the job I do. ”Or, he says, people told him:“ The reason I feel supported in my loneliness is that it’s not an issue. “

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