Support LGBTQ+ Rights in South Dakota

Support LGBTQ+ Rights in South Dakota

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Shae Lynn Sichmeller started this petition to South Dakota State Senate and

Currently, South Dakota law does not include sexual orientation, transgender, gender-identity to be protected under the hate crime statute. Meaning that it is legal in SD to discriminate against someone (i.e. fire or evict them) because they are a member of the LGBTQ+ community. The SD Attorney Generals website states “Hate crime, also known as a bias crime, is a criminal offense committed against a person, property, or society which is motivated, in whole or in part, by the offender's bias against a race, religion, disability, sexual orientation or ethnicity/national origin.”

Although the description of a hate crime is factual here, it is misleading because sexual orientation is in fact not protected under South Dakota state law. Under hate crime statutes across the country, 34 states include protections for sexual orientation, 30 for gender protections, and only 22 for transgender/gender-identity protections.

This “loophole” leaves the door open for disgraceful acts such as burning a rainbow flag on Facebook live yelling “burn fa**ot flag, burn” to only be charged as a petty misdemeanor for property damage and not the hate crime that it is. We have lived in a society that props up hatred and discrimination for far too long. Now, we have the platforms to speak out against this violence and insight real change that we desperately need. Please use the resources at our disposal and help change our world for the better. The time is now, and it starts with you.

0 have signed. Let’s get to 1,500!
At 1,500 signatures, this petition is more likely to get picked up by local news!