SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KELO) — Bills passing through the South Dakota legislature have gained attention because of the impact they could have, if they’re passed, on the LGBTQ+ community.
Hundreds of people gathered in Sioux Falls to protest the recent bills Saturday.
Those bills include House Bills 1057 and 1215 as well as Senate Bills 88 and 93. A big focus was centered on HB 1057, which, if passed, would make it a crime for any medical professional to perform surgeries or provide treatment that alters the gender or slows the puberty of a child younger than 16.
Chale Decarain says he was protesting against this bill today because he wants to protect transgender children.
“All this, to me, is just an attack on trans kids. It’s irrelevant,” Cale Decarain, a protest attendee said.
Sabrina Louis, an organizer of the protest, says she wants to show South Dakota that they care about transgender kids in the state.
“It’s important to take action and speak to your legislators, because if we don’t show our opinions to them then they will assume everything is fine when it’s not,” Sabrina Louis, protest organizer, said.
Attendees gathered first at Nelson Park and then walked to Fawick Park holding up signs of various messages showing support for the LGBTQ+ community.
Decarain says, if passed, these bills could have an economic impact in South Dakota, too.
“We’re going to lose a lot of tourism and we’re going to lose the NCAA’s, I bet, and maybe big businesses will pull out, who knows,” Decarain said.