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Pentagon Says Progress Made In Opening Jobs to Women

American Forces Press Service:

June 18, 2013

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WASHINGTON — The services and U.S. Special Operations Command have completed plans to gradually open jobs to female service members that used to be closed to them, senior Pentagon officials announced Tuesday.

Joined by senior service officials at a Pentagon news conference, Juliet Beyler, the Defense Department’s director of officer and enlisted personnel management, said Tuesday’s announcement was a milestone.

She noted that in January, then-Defense Secretary Leon E. Panetta and Army Gen. Martin E. Dempsey, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, rescinded the 1994 Direct Ground Combat Definition and Assignment Rule. That policy barred women from jobs — such as tank mechanic and field artillery radar operator — performed near combat units. It also prohibited women in jobs such as intelligence, communications and logistics from assignment at units smaller than a brigade.