Australian Defence Force backs transgender personnel

The second highest ranking member of the Australian Defence Force has defended their support for personnel with gender dysphoria.

Appearing at a senate estimates hearing Vice Chief of the Defence Force, Vice Admiral Ray Griggs, said the cost of training staff outweighed the cost of proving their health.

“These are people who are wearing the uniform of this country and serving this country. They deserve to be treated with (the) respect that any other member of the ADF is treated with,” Vice Admiral Griggs said.

It was recently revealed that the Defence Force has spent 1.05 million treating 28 personnel with gender dysphoria between 2012 and 2017.

Asked to comment on the report Vice Admiral Griggs said he felt the commentary over the issue had bordered on hysterical.

“I have found the public debate to be almost bordering on hysterical,” Vice Admiral Griggs said.

“It’s a resolvable mental health condition, it sometimes requires surgery and sometimes it doesn’t,” Vice Admiral Griggs said.

“The aim here is not to lose talented individuals whom we have spent many, many millions of dollars in training. Many, many times more than one million dollars-worth of treatment.”

The support for transgender personnel has also been backed by Defence Minister Marise Payne and Defence Personnel Minister Dan Tehan.

Liberal MP Andrew Hastie has questioned the ADF’s support for transgender people and called on the army, navy and air force to develop stricter recruitment processes.

OIP Staff

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