New Study Says U.S. Military Loses 4,000 Troops Per Year Due to ’Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell’
A new research brief from the Williams Institute on Sexual Orientation Law and Public Policy points out that an estimated 4,000 lesbian, gay and bisexual military personnel have been lost each year because of the U.S. military’s "Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell" policy.
The analysis shows that had the "Don’t Ask Don’t Tell" policy not been instituted in 1994, an estimated 4,000 lesbian, gay and bisexual military personnel would have been retained each year. Of that group, an average of 1,000 men and women were discharged each year as a direct result of the policy and 3,000 would likely stay in the military if they could serve openly.
The military intends to add more than 18,000 new troops each year for the next five years. If patterns observed in 2004 were to continue for the next five years, the estimated retained LGB personnel would account for nearly one in six of the additional troops required.
"If the military needs more troops, it makes more sense to keep the estimated 65,000 well-trained and seasoned lesbian, gay and bisexual soldiers they already have instead of lowering standards to recruit convicted felons, as a recent report from the Michael D. Palm Center shows they have been doing," study author Gary J. Gates said in a release. "Allowing lesbians, gay men, and bisexuals to serve openly could go a long way to meeting the President’s directive to add 92,000 troops in five years."
For more information on this study, go to www.law.ucla.edu/williamsinstitute