Press Release - For Immediate Release - 26 January 2010
LOS ANGELES - Today, the Williams Institute at UCLA School of Law released a research brief that updates estimates of the number of lesbian, gay, and bisexual men and women serving in the US military along with the cost of the Don’t Ask/Don’t Tell policy.
Dr. Gary J. Gates, Williams Distinguished Scholar and study author states that, “Despite official policy requiring that lesbians, gay men, and bisexuals remain silent about their sexual orientation, data from the US Census Bureau suggest that an estimated 66,000 LGB men and women are serving in the US military.”
The study also updates prior estimates of the cost of the Don’t Ask/Don’t Tell policy made by the General Accountability Office and the Palm Center at the University of California, Santa Barbara. Gates concludes that, “Ending Don’t Ask/Don’t Tell will save a substantial amount of taxpayer dollars since estimates suggest that the policy has cost more than half a billion dollars.”
Key findings from the analyses are as follows:
· An estimated 66,000 lesbians, gay men, and bisexuals are serving in the US military, accounting for approximately 2.2% of military personnel.
o Approximately 13,000 LGB people are serving on active duty (comprising 0.9% of all active duty personnel) while nearly 53,000 are serving in the guard and reserve forces (3.4%).
o While women comprise only about 14% of active duty personnel, they comprise more than 43% of LGB men and women serving on active duty.
· Lifting DADT restrictions could attract an estimated 36,700 men and women to active duty service and 12,000 more individuals to the guard and reserve.
· Since its inception in 1994, the “Don’t Ask/Don’t Tell” policy has cost the military between $290 million and more than a half a billion dollars.
o The military spends an estimated $22,000 to $43,000 per person to replace those discharged under DADT.
The full research brief can be found at: www.law.ucla.edu/williamsinsitute