The age-old United States Department of Defense ban that prevented any American who was transgender from serving in the military has officially been lifted, “effective immediately”, according to Defense Secretary Ashton Carter during an announcement Thursday.

This from BuzzFeed:

“Americans who want to serve and meet our standards should be afforded the opportunity to do so,” Carter said. “Implementation will begin today.”

“We don’t want barriers limiting a person’s qualifications to serve,” he said. “We have reason to be proud today of what this will mean for our military, because it is the right thing to do, and it is another step in ensuring that we continue to recruit and retain the most qualified people,”

A previous Department of Defense rule said people with a history “transsexualism” have a “psychosexual condition” that renders them medically unfit for service.

More on the nuts and bolts of the historic rescript:

Carter added that the policies in place starting now will be up for review in two years. The stipulation that those attempting to join the service must have “completed their gender transition for 18 months before enlisting” will be one of them.

For more information, via the Pentagon itself, click here (PDF).