Gay Troops to Get Full Discharge Pay, in Settlement of Case Against Defense Department
In a settlement announced today, former service members in a class action lawsuit challenging a Defense Department policy that halved the separation pay of those honorably discharged for “homosexuality” will receive their full pay.
The NYT reports:
According to the American Civil Liberties Union, which brought the action against the Defense Department, the half pay was the result of an internal policy adopted in 1991. Troops are entitled to separation pay if they are involuntarily and honorably discharged after completing at least six years of service. Separation pay is calculated based on years of active service and the service member’s monthly basic pay when at the time he or she was discharged.
Said Laura Schauer Ives, managing attorney for the ACLU of New Mexico: “There was absolutely no need to subject these service members to a double dose of discrimination by removing them from the armed forces in the first place, and then denying them this small benefit to ease the transition to civilian life. This decision represents a long-delayed justice to these veterans.”