Officials from the Pentagon have announced that all four branches of the military will open up all employment positions to female service members by 2016. The guidelines for this change are expected to be available by fall of 2015.
Considering the combat service that women have provided during the latest Iraq and Afghanistan wars, Congress has made it a priority to eliminate rules restricted for males only in the recent years.
Defense officials said in a testimony before the House Armed Services Committee that they are reviewing the last male restricted occupations to establish any upcoming arrangements that need to be taken care of within their ranks.
The law currently states that gender-neutral standards must be developed for all military occupations by the end of September 2015. At the end of December 2015, the plans allowing women to compete for said positions should be complete. Army and Navy officials claim that the review of requirements for certain special operations forces could extend into late this year.
According to Navy Secretary Ray Mabus, there is an issue with recruiting when it comes to female military personnel. Women make up about 15 percent of active-duty members today. “We don’t have enough women in our service,” says Mabus. “One of the reasons we’re having problems is that we do not have enough flexibility in how we manage our force.”
Legislative proposals for recruiting females and moving women service members to the newly opened job positions will be presented in the forthcoming defense authorization bill debate by Mabus and other secretaries.
Army officials have announced that over 4,100 officer and enlisted positions that are currently male-only will be opened for women.
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Source: Military Times