US Army to induct women into all military occupational specialty codes
The US Army has revealed plans to fully integrate women in all military occupational specialty (MOS) code and combat units.
The proposal, which is yet to be approved by the US Defense Secretary Ash Carter, recommends including measurable gender-neutral standards based on combat readiness requirements.
Upon execution, the decision will see women being integrated as infantry and armour officers later this year in designated brigade combat teams.
The move follows several years of extensive research, collaboration and practical evaluation.
US Army Staff chief general Mark A. Milley said: "For the record, I fully support opening military occupational specialties (MOSs) in the US Army to all soldiers regardless of gender.
"And, I believe full integration of women in all career fields will either maintain, sustain or improve the overall readiness... and our capability of the force if... and only if we maintain and enforce rigorous combat readiness standards and we maintain a merit-based results-oriented organisation, and we apply no quotas and no pressure... we will not impose quotas on ourselves."
However, the complete integration of women in to the service is expected to take several years.
Milley added: "The army is currently in the process of ensuring our facilities comply with law and DOD policies for access and gender-neutral living standards at both our basic and individual training."
Since 2011, the army has opened 95,000 positions in combat arms units to women, as well as nine MOSs.
US Marine Corps commandant general Robert Neller also recommended the induction of female service members into combat positions.
Neller said: "It's my personal view in light of integration that every American physically qualified should register for the draft."
Image: The decision will see women being integrated in to the Army through a 'leader first' approach. Photo: courtesy of Spc. Nikayla Shodeen / US Army.