Decorated army veteran Yvonne Sillett will appear at the Royal Commission into Defence and Veteran Suicide on Monday. Yvonne was driven out of the Australian Army over her sexuality three years before the government changed policy and allowed gays and lesbians to serve.
Yvonne says on the Discharged LGBTI Veterans’ Association website (DLVA) that she joined the Army at 18. After then qualifying as a cipher operator, she obtained the Top-Secret clearance necessary for the job.
But a decade later, the army’s then discriminatory policies caught up with her.
“In 1988, I was caught up in a ‘witch-hunt’ at Watsonia Barrack for being gay.”
The Army consequently notified Yvonne Sillett that it would reduce her security clearance to Confidential. She could no longer serve in the Signal Corps.
“The prospect of future promotion was next to zero and I would never be able to train female recruits again. I elected for honourable discharge after serving for 10 years!”
If Yvonne had served another decade, she would have received a pension for life. Because of her sexuality, that never happened.
Continue reading: https://qnews.com.au/lesbian-forced-out-of-army-will-address-royal-commission/ (source)