In September 2011, the so-called “Don’t ask, don’t tell” law prohibiting gay and lesbian people from serving openly in the military is repealed. Service members previously discharged under that law now are able to re-enlist, and those eager to serve their country, but unwilling to compromise who they are as individuals, can openly join.
Through Cal Veteran Services, Berkeley Law’s Boalt Veteran Assistance Project begins offering legal services provided by student-veterans at the law school to both gay and lesbian student-veterans and their straight allies who refused to “out” military colleagues and were dishonorably discharged. The project provides advocacy for those applying for a discharge upgrade to become eligible for veterans’ benefits.
In April 2012, UC Berkeley’s ROTC issued a statement to the campus community that was considered rare for a college or university ROTC office. It emphasized that the military’s “perspectives, capabilities, and strengths are enhanced by being inclusive of American people from diverse populations. This enables the military to engage in sharper critical thinking and innovative decision-making, to meet more effectively challenges wherever they may arise, and to recruit and retain the best talent in this great country.”
The statement ended by welcoming “all Berkeley students” to learn more about military service and scholarship opportunities.