As reported earlier, following Senator Maggie Hassan’s request to Army Secretary Ryan McCarthy to review and possibly change the gender-neutral uniform policy, the women entering the U.S. Military Academy at West Point, N.Y., are set to receive smaller-sized Army combat uniforms.
“I am grateful that the Army has agreed to change its uniform policy at West Point to be more inclusive for female cadets,” Hassan said in a statement. “Uniforms are an important part of military academies’ culture, and ensuring that female cadets have uniforms that fit is essential to making them feel included in a space that has been historically male-dominated.”
On October 5, the request was raised to review the current female uniforms and also explain why they were not offered the female sizes of the Army Combat Uniforms (ACU) during the issuance of uniforms, even when the uniforms are sold at the base’s Post Exchange.
This meant the female cadets were either supposed to purchase the correct-sized uniforms by paying out of their pockets or wear the ill-fitting unisex ACU which were a better fit for male cadets.
The female ACU offers more room around the hips, thighs, and bust, and comes in a smaller yet better fitting for women.
Lt. Gen. Darryl Williams, the West Point superintendent responded to Senator Hassan through a letter on behalf of McCarthy and wrote to confirm that the exclusion was never the intent of the policy and that most uniforms are sized to each cadet and are custom-tailored.
“Secretary McCarthy and I commit today to change this uniform issue policy so that future incoming West Point cadets are afforded the opportunity to be issued the type of ACU that best fits their individual body type as part of their uniform issue during cadet basic training,” Williams wrote.