NCTE Urges South Dakota Gov. Daugaard to Veto Bill Targeting Trans Students

Washington, D.C. - February 16, 2016 – Today, South Dakota's State Senate passed a bill that will force transgender students to either use restrooms that do not match their genders or to be segregated to single-user restrooms. This worsens the harm that transgender students already face on a daily basis. The bill had previously passed the State House of Representatives.

Gov. Dennis Daugaard now has five business days to veto this bill before it becomes law.

This bill is completely unprecedented, as the first piece of legislation that attacks transgender people to ever pass out of a state legislature. However, it is only one of several anti-transgender bills that the South Dakota legislature is voting on this month.

In light of this bill's passage, NCTE Executive Director Mara Keisling said: "This bill hurts transgender students, takes away control from local schools, and doesn't solve any problems. In fact, it does more harm than good to both trans kids and South Dakota's reputation."

Beyond being cruel to transgender students, enforcing this bill would also be expensive and invasive. The bill would require that bathroom use be "determined by a person's chromosomes and anatomy as identified at birth." Chromosomal testing to determine which restroom someone should use is an unrealistic burden on schools and South Dakotan students, as well as a threat to students' privacy.

NCTE urges Gov. Daugaard to veto this harmful bill in order to avoid setting a dangerous precedent that could have repercussions for vulnerable transgender students around the nation.

The National Center for Transgender Equality is the nation's leading social justice advocacy organization winning life-saving change for transgender people. As a national social justice organization, NCTE is devoted to ending discrimination and violence against transgender people through education and advocacy on national issues of importance to transgender people.

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