Beyond I do
Beyond I do

South Dakota

Crystal & Amanda

South Dakota

South Dakota is one of the 31 states that legally discriminates against people like Crystal and Amanda.

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It’s such a defeating experience and makes survival consume our lives.

Imagine not being able to provide for your family, build a home together, and enjoy the fruits of your hard work, just because of who you are. This was the case for Crystal and Amanda.

Crystal was born and raised a boy, but transitioned to live her life every day as the woman she has always known herself to be.

Crystal worked hard to provide for her wife, Amanda. Their financial situation was very tight but they were making ends meet. However, Crystal’s work environment became increasing hostile as people suspected that she is transgender1. After repeated negative comments made to her by her boss, she was forced to come out2 as a transgender woman. But despite the open harassment and attacks, Crystal remained at the job because she needed it to keep her family afloat.

One morning, Crystal was running late on her way to work. She called her manager, who didn’t pick up the phone, so she left a message saying she would be late. Other employees had previously called in when running late and that had been sufficient, but because of how she was treated previously, she was nervous and anxious, fearing the worst. When she arrived, her manager met her outside and fired her on the spot, saying that Crystal hadn’t shown up for work. Though unstated, it was clear to Crystal that she was fired because of her manager’s clear dislike that she is a transgender and lesbian3 woman. Crystal was devastated.

“My wife struggles working hard to support both of us because of it. It’s such a defeating experience and makes survival consume our lives,” Crystal said.

I feel so helpless and depressed knowing I can’t help [my wife].

With Crystal out of a job, the family met extreme financial hardship. They were already struggling, but this set them back in ways they couldn’t have imagined. Crystal reflected, “We live in an RV right now, and we’re still trying to pay it off. We have no running water, cold air pours in through cracks, [we have] only a mini fridge and microwave with no stove, and the toilet freezes. My wife walks to and from work, sunshine or blizzard, because we need the money. I feel so helpless and depressed knowing I can’t help her.”

South Dakota is one of 31 states that doesn’t protect LGBT4 people from discrimination. So LGBT Americans like Crystal can be fired from their jobs, evicted from their homes, and denied services like medical treatment simply because of who they are or who they love.

1Transgender

People whose gender identity and/or gender expression differs from the sex assigned at birth.

2Outed

Being outed means an LGBT person's sexual orientation or gender identity has been shared or announced by another person without their consent.

3Lesbian

A lesbian is a woman whose innate, enduring physical, romantic, and/or emotional attraction is to other women.

4LGBT

LGBT is a common acronym that stands for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender.

Laws

South Dakota is one of 31 states in this country that doesn't fully protect LGBT people from discrimination in employment, housing, and public accommodations.

4

South Dakota has passed 4 laws that actively harm LGBT people.

Learn more

In South Dakota, LGBT people ...

  • Can be fired or denied a promotion

  • Can be evicted from their homes or denied housing

  • Can be denied service at public establishments, denied medical treatment, or even kicked out of restaurants or businesses

South Dakota

865.5 k

South Dakota’s total population

13k

13,043

Total LGBT population

30% Of LGBT population raising children

31%

Of LGBT population raising children

Explore the map for LGBT stories & facts from each of the 31 discriminatory states.

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