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Witt v. U.S. Air Force

Final Settlement to Landmark Lawsuit: Major Witt to Retire with Full Benefits

May 10, 2011
Major Margaret Witt has reached a final settlement in her landmark lawsuit challenging her dismissal under “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell.” Major Witt attended the signing ceremony for the repeal of DADT in December and now will retire with full benefits, the ACLU-WA announced. 
Pictured:Maj. Witt (right) with her partner Laurie McChesney. Read More »
 

Air Force Major Dismissed Under “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” Looks Ahead to Rejoining the Military

Nov 30, 2010
Maj. Margaret Witt, a decorated flight nurse dismissed under Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell,” spoke about her eagerness to rejoin the U.S. Air Force. When reinstated, she will become the first openly gay person to serve in the military due to a court order under DADT. Major Witt spoke at a press conference at the ACLU-WA, which has represented her in a four-year-long lawsuit seeking her reinstatement.   Read More »
 

Air Force Major Dismissed Under “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” to Rejoin the Military

Nov 23, 2010
Major Margaret Witt, a decorated flight nurse who had been dismissed under the “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” policy, will be able to resume her service with the U.S. Air Force, the ACLU of Washington announced today.  Major Witt will become the first openly gay person to serve in the military due to a court order under “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell.” The ACLU-WA has represented Major Witt in a four-year-long lawsuit seeking her reinstatement. Pictured: Major Witt (far right) deployed in Oman.  Read More »
 

Court Rules Sexual Orientation Not a Bar to Military Service for Major Witt

Sep 24, 2010
U.S. District Court Judge Ronald Leighton has ordered the Air Force to reinstate Major Margaret Witt, a decorated flight nurse who had been dismissed under the “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” policy. After six days of trial, the Court found that Major Witt’s sexual orientation does not negatively impact unit morale or cohesion.  ACLU of Washington attorneys have directly represented Major Witt since her case began in 2006. Read More »
 

DADT on Trial: Decision Expected Friday!

The landmark trial of Maj. Margaret Witt wrapped up yesterday, and Judge Ronald B. Leighton announced that he will deliver his decision this Friday at 1:30 PM PDT.

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DADT on Trial: Like “Extracting a Parent from the Family”

Testimony from former members of Maj. Witt’s unit, the 446th Aeromedical Evacuation Squadron, filled the third day of the trial. Leading off was Jill Robinson, who spent 23 years in the Air Force. Inspiring her service was a recruiting poster for the Air Force Reserves that featured Maj. Witt on the cover.

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DADT On Trial: "In the Military, Trust is Essential"

Day 2 of Witt v. Air Force started with testimony from Darren Manzella, who served in the Army for six years as a health care specialist after enlisting in 2002 and was twice deployed to the Middle East. His testimony focused on the need for honesty about oneself in building a team, saying “In the military, trust is essential.”

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DADT on Trial: Maj. Witt's Dismissal "Negatively Impacted the Unit"

After opening statements, Jim Schaffer, current Spokane Fire Department Captain and former 446th unit member, began his testimony. Before retiring from the Air Force in 2006, he and Major Witt served on the same flight crew on a number of missions and were deployed together a number of times. Schaffer spoke about Mjr. Witt’s stellar career and told stories of how her calm, cool, and collected nature, plus with her ability to include all team members, help their team succeed and save lives. He told of a particular occasion where a Dept. of Defense civilian went into cardiac arrest while aboard a plane, and Maj. Witt’s ability to accurately assess the situation made sure that the person survived.

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