The ACLU has settled a suit with the federal government that will allow many of the military servicemembers discharged under the anti-gay “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” (DADT) to receive full separation pay. Because of the way DADT penalized homosexuality, many discharged under the policy only received one-half separation pay. As result of the suit, any of those individuals discharged after November 10, 2004 — the farthest back the statute of limitations allows — will now be entitled to receive the full pay they were denied.
Joshua Block, staff attorney for the ACLU’s LGBT Project, points out that this decision ends the penalization for those veterans:
BLOCK: It makes no sense to continue to penalize service members who were discharged under a discriminatory statute that has already been repealed. The amount of the pay owed to these veterans is small by military standards, but is hugely significant in acknowledging their service to their country.
The original case was brought on behalf of 181 honorably discharged veterans whose separation pay was cut due to DADT, which officially ended in September, 2010. As many as 3,300 could benefit from Monday’s ruling.