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Office of Military Personnel (CG-133)

Contact CG-1331

COMMANDANT (CG-1331)
ATTN: POLICY & STANDARDS DIVISION
US COAST GUARD  STOP 7907
2703 MARTIN LUTHER KING JR AVE SE
WASHINGTON DC 20593-7907

Transgender Policy

The revised military transgender service policy is not a ban on transgender individuals.  There are many transgender members serving today with honor and distinction in all of the Armed Services.  Consistent with our Core Values, the Coast Guard will continue to treat all members with respect and dignity, and we expect all members to treat each other with the same respect and dignity.  Furthermore, the Coast Guard will neither deny accession into the Service, nor involuntarily separate, discharge, deny reenlistment, or limit continuation of service based solely on gender identity.

Frequently Asked Questions

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As a military service, Coast Guard must remain consistent with the policies and procedures established by the Department of Defense. Service in the Coast Guard shall be open to all persons who can meet the high standards for military service and readiness without special accommodations.  All members shall be treated with dignity and respect.  New transgender policy will take effect on 12 APR 2019.

All persons shall be treated with dignity and respect.  No person shall be denied accession into the Coast Guard, involuntarily separated or discharged, denied reenlistment or continuation of service, or otherwise subjected to adverse action or treatment solely on the basis of gender identity. 

A transgender individual is defined by DoD as an individual who has sexual identity or gender expression that differs from their assigned sex at birth. It is not a medical condition for persons to identify with a gender that is different from their biological sex

Service members who have been diagnosed with gender dysphoria, or in the case of Reservists had a diagnosis confirmed, by a military medical provider before 12 APR 2019 may be allowed to transition genders under the previous policy and continue serving in the Coast Guard in their preferred gender. These members will be considered “exempt”. 

Members who meet the below criteria before 12 APR 2019 are considered “exempt”:

  • Entered into a contract for enlistment (including delayed entry) into the Armed Forces (DD Form 4) or were selected for entrance into an officer commissioning program through a selection board or similar process; and,
  • Medically qualified for Military Services or selected for entrance into an officer commissioning program in their preferred gender; or,
  • As a member of the Coast Guard, received a diagnosis of gender dysphoria from, or had such diagnosis confirmed by, a military medical provider.

Exempt members may serve in their preferred gender, pursue gender transition, and obtain a gender marker change in DEERS.

No. Coast Guard member cannot be separated, discharged, or denied reenlistment or continuation of service solely on the basis of gender identity.  Members who are exempt may continue service in their preferred gender. 

Members otherwise qualified for accession who don’t meet the criteria to be considered “exempt” will be disqualified from accessions if following criteria are met:

  • A history or diagnosis of gender dysphoria will be disqualifying unless:
    • As certified by a licensed mental health provider, the applicant can demonstrate 36 consecutive months of stability in his/her biological sex immediately before applying to serve.  The medical provider must certify that the applicant does not have clinically significant distress or impairment in social, occupational, or other important areas of functioning; and,
    • The applicant can demonstrate that he/she has not transitioned to his/her preferred gender and a licensed medical provider has determined that gender transition is not necessary to protect the health of the individual; and,
    • The applicant is willing and able to adhere to all applicable standards, including the standards and requirements associated with the applicant’s biological sex.
  • A history of cross-sex hormone therapy or a history of sex reassignment or genital reconstructive surgery will be disqualifying.

Transgender in and of itself is not a basis for separation under the new policy.  A diagnosis of gender dysphoria could be considered disqualifying for a currently serving member unless:

  • A military medical provider has determined that gender transition is not necessary to protect the health of the individual; and
  • The Service member is willing and able to adhere to all applicable standards, including the standards associated with his or her biological sex.

The waiver request process will be included in the next update to Military Transgender Service, COMDTINST M1000.13(series).

For members seeking treatment before the deadline, an initial diagnosis of gender dysphoria must be noted in their medical record before 12 APR 2019 (the effective date of the new policy) to be considered for exemption.

Waivers to be considered exempt will be considered on case by case basis.  Guidance on the waiver request process will be included in the next update to Military Transgender Service, COMDTINST M1000.13A. Questions regarding Transgender and Gender Dysphoria concerns and policy should be directed to the Service Central Coordination Cell at HQS-SMB-SCCC@uscg.mil

Members who have an approved GTR will be considered exempt and will continue with their transition plan.  They will be able to serve in their preferred gender as long as they meet retention standards. 

Questions regarding Transgender and Gender Dysphoria concerns and policy should be directed to the Service Central Coordination Cell at HQS-SMB-SCCC@uscg.mil.  This inbox provides privileged conversations with a team of experts on Transgender policy and other concerns.

Members who are deployed and unable to see a military medical provider must contact their military medical provider within 30 days of completion of deployment to discuss gender dysphoria to be under consideration for exempt status.

Waivers to be considered exempt will be considered on case by case basis.  Guidance on the waiver request process will be included in the next update to Military Transgender Service, COMDTINST M1000.13A. Questions regarding Transgender and Gender Dysphoria concerns and policy should be directed to the Service Central Coordination Cell at HQS-SMB-SCCC@uscg.mil

Questions regarding Transgender and Gender Dysphoria concerns and policy should be directed to the Service Central Coordination Cell at HQS-SMB-SCCC@uscg.mil.  This inbox provides privileged conversations with a team of experts on Transgender policy and other concerns.

Yes, the member can remain in the Coast Guard if they are willing and able to adhere to all applicable standards, including the standards associated with their biological sex.   

All service members are entitled to health care. If a service member is not considered exempt and is diagnosed with gender dysphoria, he or she is entitled to the appropriate level of medical care necessary. However, if he or she is unwilling or unable to serve in his or her biological sex or a military medical professional determines that a transition is necessary for the health of the member, that member is subject to separation. Until that member separates from the Coast Guard, they are entitled to all medically necessary care, required to protect the member’s health, which is offered by military medical care.

Per the policy, if a final diagnosis of gender dysphoria is not complete prior to 12 APR 2019, the member will not be considered exempt. However, if the member has an initial diagnosis of gender dysphoria noted in their medical record prior to the effective date of the new policy, the Coast Guard will consider a member’s request to be considered exempt (grandfathered).  The update to Military Transgender Service, COMDTINST M1000.13 (series), will explain this process.