For Wednesday, October 20, 2010
POSTED: 01:30 a.m. HST, Oct 20, 2010
LAST UPDATED: 08:01 p.m. HST, Oct 20, 2010
Local military recruiters are rolling with new Pentagon-issued guidelines stating for the first time ever that openly gay men and women can apply to join the U.S. military.
Thomas Rossiter, a spokesman for the Honolulu Army Recruiting Company, which oversees 10 recruiting offices in Hawaii, said the headquarters of the Army delivered its guidelines yesterday.
"It's pretty simple. The guidance at this point is, if we have an applicant who admits they are homosexual, we will still process that individual for enlistment," Rossiter said.
Rossiter declined to say whether he thinks the issue even will come up for recruiters in the short term.
"I don't want to speculate on that," he said, adding that the policy change "is a very sensitive subject."
"I don't think it's going to have a negative impact, to be honest with you," Rossiter said. "I don't think that it is a negative impact or a positive impact. I think it's just one of those situations that we have to handle, and whatever the guidance is, we'll move forward with it smartly."