All Military Occupations Open to Women by Next Year

All Military Occupations Open to Women by Next Year

March 24, 2015

All Military Occupations Open to Women by Next Year

All of the services are on track to open all military jobs to women by next year according to Pentagon officials. This news comes as the Pentagon faces a deadline of September to develop gender-neutral standards for all military occupations. They then have until the end of December to finalize plans to allow women to compete for those jobs.

Defense officials testified before the House Armed Services Committee recently. In that testimony, they said all services are seeing what accommodations will need to be made for females entering the final male-only occupations within their ranks.

Military officials have the option of requesting a hardship waiver for certain military specialties. As of now, and in their testimony in front of the House Armed Services Committee, there was no indication that they expect to do that. Army and Navy officials did say, however, that reviewing the requirements for some posts within special operations forces may stretch into the late fall.

The Problem the Military Faces with Women

Presently, 15 percent of the active-duty force is female. And it seems, from their testimony recently, that the military will not have an issue following Congress's demands for eliminating male-only rules in the services.

In fact, we recently read about female soldiers participating in the next grueling Army Ranger course assessment. Army officials also announced plans recently to open more than 4,100 officer and enlisted positions in special operations units to women.

So, if opening up all jobs in the military to women isn't an issue, then what is?

At least on military official, Navy Secretary Ray Mabus, says that issue is recruiting. When appearing before the House Armed Services Committee Malbus said, "We don't have enough women in our service. One of the reasons we're having problems is that we do not have enough flexibility in how we manage our force."

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