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Coast Guard Leadership Stands With Transgender Service Members

Following President Donald Trump's unexpected announcement on Twitter of a new ban on transgender people in the military last week, the commandant of the Coast Guard has expressed support for its openly transgender service members.

Speaking at the Center for Strategic and International Studies on Tuesday morning, Commandant Admiral Paul Zukunft said that his office reached out to the Coast Guard's 13 openly transgender members after Trump's announcement last week, including Lieutenant Taylor Miller, the subject of a recent Washington Post profile.

"If you read that story, Taylor's family has disowned her. Her family is the United States Coast Guard," Zukunft said. "And I told Taylor: 'I will not turn my back. We have made an investment in you, and you have made an investment in the Coast Guard, and I will not break faith.'"

No further guidance from the White House regarding the implementation of the new policy has followed the initial announcement, which blindsided senior military leadership, including Secretary of Defense James Mattis and Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman General Joseph Dunford.