Central PA's LGBT News Source
Recently the nation’s two leading lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer (LGBTQ) military non-profits — the American Military Partner Association (AMPA) and OutServe-SLDN — merged.
According to their news release, the merger forms the nation’s largest non-profit organization dedicated to education, advocacy and support for LGBTQ service members, military spouses, veterans, family members and allies — the Modern Military Association of America.
“I’m both humbled and honored to lead the Modern Military Association of America at this challenging moment in the fight for LGBTQ military equality,” said Modern Military Association of America Executive Director Andy Blevins.
“While we’ve made tremendous progress over the years as a community, much of that progress is now being threatened and rolled back — especially for our transgender service members who now face an unconscionable transgender military ban. We’re committed to doing everything within our power to stand up for all of our modern military and veteran families and ensure they have a powerful voice in Washington and beyond.”
The Modern Military Association of America is launching at a challenging moment for the LGBTQ military community as the Trump-Pence administration rolls back progress by implementing a transgender military ban. Just last month, the discriminatory ban went into effect — impacting thousands of actively serving transgender military members and many more qualified transgender recruits who want to serve.
Both AMPA and OutServe-SLDN have been leading voices in the fight to overturn the transgender military ban. Joined by Lambda Legal and the state of Washington, OutServe-SLDN filed the lawsuit Karnoski v. Trump in 2017 on behalf of AMPA, the Human Rights Campaign, Seattle-based Gender Justice League, and nine individual plaintiffs. The lawsuit will continue with the new organization.
The organization’s new executive director Andy Blevins previously served as a law clerk for Military Disability Lawyer, LLC and the child advocacy section of Oregon’s Justice Department. He also had the opportunity to work for the First Lady in the Obama White House.