Military gives a salute to Gay Pride Month; messages sent to commands

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“It is appropriate and gratifying that Secretary Hagel and his leadership team would follow the historic precedent set last year by then-Secretary Leon Panetta by honoring LGBT Pride Month at the Department of Defense,” Ms. Robinson said. “Acknowledging the accomplishments and contributions of lesbian, gay, and bisexual service members sends an important message all the way down the chain of command: that our military is stronger, and our nation safer, because it includes them.”

Mr. Obama issued a proclamation May 31 declaring June as Gay Pride Month, saying his “administration is a proud partner in the journey toward LGBT equality.”

On Sept. 1, the Pentagon plans to begin issuing military ID cards to the same-sex partners of military personnel. It will entitle them to scores of benefits, such as counseling and low-price commissaries, but not health care and housing benefits because federal law restricts those benefits to married, heterosexual couples.

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