NPR logo It Will Still Be Months Before 'Don't Ask, Don't Tell' Is Gone


It Will Still Be Months Before 'Don't Ask, Don't Tell' Is Gone

Now that the "don't ask, don't tell" policy that bars openly gay men and women from serving in the military is being repealed, how long will it be before the historic change takes effect?

As The Wall Street Journal writes this morning, "the task of lifting the ban ... (will) likely take months:

"Once the change becomes law with President Barack Obama's signature, the military will need to revise policies and regulations that govern everything from leadership training to standards of conduct. And before the policy officially ends, the president, the secretary of defense and the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff must sign a letter certifying that the changes wouldn't affect military readiness.

"Full repeal would take effect 60 days after that certification letter is transmitted to the congressional armed-services committees."

The Los Angeles Times adds that:

"Until the repeal takes effect, gay and lesbian service members can still be discharged because of their sexual orientation."