Pentagon chief Leon Panetta plans to remove the ban on women serving in combat, according to an Associated Press report.
The move "overturns a 1994 rule banning women from being assigned to smaller ground combat units."
U.S. Sen. Kay Hagan, of North Carolina, released the following statement on the Pentagon’s decision to lift the 1994 ban on women serving in combat:
“The Pentagon’s decision to allow women to serve in combat roles is a positive step. Women will now be able to serve our country in new capacities, and they will be afforded more opportunities for the same career advancement as their male counterparts. As a member of the Senate Armed Services Committee and a Senator from the state with the 3rd-largest military presence in the nation, I thank all of our service members – male and female, and I am committed to working with the Pentagon to implement this policy.”
According to Reuters, the military services will have until May 16 to present plans showing how they will comply with the policy change by 2016. The plans will detail how quickly new combat jobs for women will open up and whether the services will seek exemptions to keep some jobs closed.
Read the full report here.