Bi Falklands veteran gets medals returned at last

Parliament

A bisexual man who was thrown out of the Royal Navy more than 20 years ago has had his medal returned to him.

Joe Ousalice, 68, had to take the Ministry of Defence to court last year to force them to hand back a medal taken from him on the grounds of his sexual orientation – despite the European courts having overturned the ban on bi and gay servicepeople in the UK armed forces way back in 1999.

Joe served in the Falklands and Middle East as well as six tours of duty in Northern Ireland in a military career spanning nearly twenty years before being kicked out in 1993.

Defence Minister Ben Wallace handed the medal back to Mr Ousalice at a ceremony aboard HMS Excellent at Portsmouth Naval Base.

As previously reported the government has been forced to move on the issue in recent weeks with the Defence Minister apologising for the ban and the harm it did to the lives of people who were stripped of medals, pensions and honourable records of service and thrown out unsupported back into civilian life.