Hastie committed to cutting gender reassignment surgery in defence

Western Australian Liberal MP Andrew Hastie has declared he’s committed to stopping transgender service personnel from receiving gender reassignment surgery on the tax payer’s dollar.

The former SAS officer discussed his opposition to the defence force policy in a recent speech that was reported in the media over the weekend.

“I do not see how these surgeries ­enhance our war-fighting capability as a nation. It’s a bad joke. Why is the ADF now a ­vehicle for radical social engineering?” Hastie said.

Outlining his opposition to people undergoing transition remaining in the forces Hastie said the military was no place for “the latest academic fad or trendy political orthodoxy”.

While Defence Minister Marise Payne has defended the expenditure, Hastie has declared he’ll continue to fight for a policy change.

Appearing on Sky News, Hastie told host Peter van Onselen the purpose of the army was to fight Australia’s wars.

“We need a really good war fighting capability, and we need to be selective with our personnel.” Hastie said.

The MP said there were many examples of people being denied permission to join the defence forces.

Hastie said one of his friends had been denied because of a rugby injury, while a constituent was knocked back because he had a mild shellfish allergy. The MP said the defence forces have knocked back people in remission from cancer because of their perceived higher health costs.

“We are selective, and my view is if you present with gender dysphoria then you absolutely need help, psychological help and counselling, but we need to be very very judicious about how we spend tax payers money.”

The member for Canning said the issue needed to be debated, and he felt that many people would be concerned about the direction the Australian Defence Force was taking.

Hastie said the policy was due to “mis-steps and negligence” by the former Labor government, and allowing gender reassignment surgery should not become normal practice.

“I will always push for things which I believe are in the national interest.” Hastie said, noting that he would continue to discuss the issue with colleague Dan Tehnan, the Minister for Defence Personnel.

OIP Staff

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