Here’s the latest reason to love the ACLU: They’ve just won a class-action suit on behalf of U.S. Military veterans who were discharged under “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” in the last nine years, ensuring that they will receive their full severance pay:
People discharged from the military under "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" since November 10, 2004 who had only received one-half separation pay following their discharge but who otherwise would have received full pay now will be entitled to that full separation pay, according to the terms of a settlement agreement reached Monday between the American Civil Liberties Union and the federal government.
The case impacts approximately 181 honorably discharged veterans who had their separation pay cut in half because of the "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" policy, according to the ACLU. In order to be eligible for full separation pay, a servicemember has to have served at least six years.
Now, 181 seems like a suspiciously small number compared to the estimated 13,000 troops who were forced out during the policy’s 18-year hold. It’ll be interesting to see if the rest receive any sort of compensation as well, though considering the difficulty in acquiring benefits for those above-mentioned honorably discharged veterans, I wouldn’t hold my breath for very long.