The President of the United States took to Twitter last month to announce that anyone who identifies as trans will no longer be allowed to serve their country, citing “tremendous medical costs” and “disruption” by trans individuals.

“After consultation with my Generals and military experts, please be advised that the United States Government will not accept or allow Transgender individuals to serve in any capacity in the US Military,” he wrote.

“Our military must be focused on decisive and overwhelming victory and cannot be burdened with the tremendous medical costs and disruption that transgender in the military would entail. Thank you.”

But now, a Palm Centre report co-authored by current and retired professors at the Naval Postgraduate School in Monterey has estimated that the full cost of discharging and replacing trans soldiers in the US military is $960 million.

In case you were wondering, that’s outrageously more money than it would be to keep them – health care for the estimated 12,800 trans people already serving costs the military about $8.4 million per year.

“If President Trump is truly concerned about the financial costs of transgender service, his announced ban has it backwards,” said Aaron Belkin, director of the Palm Centre and a co-author of the report.

“American taxpayers should ask the president, who is proud of his business savvy, why he’s spending a dollar to buy a dime.”

The £960 million figure was achieved by using a “replacement-cost method”, multiplying the number of service members that would need replacing (12,800) by the cost of recruiting and training a new soldier (£75,000).

You can read the full report here.


This article was originally published on Gay Times Magazine.