APA Heralds End of Don't Ask/Don't Tell
On Saturday, December 18, the Senate passed H.R. 2965 by a vote of 65 to 31 to repeal the Defense Department policy concerning homosexuality (10 U.S.C. § 654), also referred to as "don't ask, don't tell." The bill, which was passed by the House earlier that week, was signed into law by President Obama (Public Law No: 111-321) on December 22. However, the President's signature does not officially end the military's ban on openly gay service members. "Don't ask, don't tell" will remain in effect until President Obama, Defense Secretary Robert Gates and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Michael Mullen certify to Congress that policies and procedures are in place to lift the ban without harming military readiness and effectiveness, unit cohesiveness and recruitment and retention. That certification would be followed by a 60-day wait period.
APA would like to thank all of the members who have actively worked over the last few years to bring an end to this discriminatory policy. Your advocacy played a key role in this historic vote. APA looks forward to continuing to work with the Pentagon to ensure appropriate and prompt implementation of the repeal of the "don't ask, don't tell" policy.