“While this latest official discharge number represents an all-time annual low, it is still unusually high considering that the Secretary of Defense issued a directive half-way through the fiscal year to make it much harder for military units to discharge troops under ‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell,'” said Alexander Nicholson, executive director of Servicemembers United, in a press release today.

“Despite this law clearly being on its deathbed at the time, 261 more careers were terminated and 261 more lives were abruptly turned upside down because of this policy,” Nicholson added.

Official figures say that more than 13,500 gay and lesbian servicemembers have been discharged under DADT, though Servicemembers United says that the number is at least 14,316 because National Guard discharge numbers are often omitted from the official tally.

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