Post submitted by HRC Regional Field Organizer Christopher Cooke
The 2017 legislative session is underway in South Dakota, and LGBTQ students are under attack. SB 115, which was filed on January 25, is a shameful bill targeting transgender students by prohibiting them from using school facilities consistent with the gender they live every day.
Does this sound familiar? That’s because it is. Last year, South Dakota lawmakers pushed nearly identical legislation. HB 1008 would have prevented transgender students in public schools from using restrooms and other facilities consistent with their gender identity.
HRC joined with the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) and ACLU of South Dakota, Believe Out Loud and Reconciling Ministries, Freedom for All Americans, the National Center for Transgender Equality, and the Transgender Law Center to deliver over 80,000 petition signatures to Republican South Dakota Governor Dennis Daugaard urging him to veto HB 1008. One week later, Daugaard stood on the right side of history and vetoed the bill.
HRC will continue working with our coalition partners to ensure that discrimination does not become the new norm for South Dakota.