What to know about South Dakota’s new laws in effect since Friday

Friday marks mid-2022 and with it comes several controversial new laws in South Dakota after the legislative session earlier this year.

The laws sparked massive debate before they were signed by Governor Kristi Noem, and some even sparked protests before they were passed.

Although this is not an exhaustive list, the Argus Leader reviews these laws currently in force. Here’s a breakdown of what you need to know. If there’s one you think we’ve left out, please email [email protected]

Ban on telemedicine abortion

South Dakota now bans medical abortion via telemedicine under Bill 1318. The new law also increased the penalty for the unauthorized practice of medicine during a medical abortion.

The law went into effect a week after all abortions in South Dakota were immediately made illegal, following the US Supreme Court’s decision to return legislative power over abortion access to states, essentially activating state trigger law.

After:Abortion is now illegal in South Dakota. Here’s what you need to know.

Visual map of abortion access across America by the Guttmacher Institute, showing states

This triggering law reads as follows:

“Any person who administers to a pregnant woman or who prescribes or supplies to a pregnant woman any medicine, drug or substance or uses or employs an instrument or other means with the intention of inducing an abortion, unless he there is a proper and reasonable medical judgment that the performance of an abortion is necessary to preserve the life of the pregnant woman, is guilty of a class 6 felony.”

Cases of incest and rape are no exception to current law.

Ban on transgender people in women’s sport

Defined as a law to protect fairness in women’s sports, Senate Bill 46 now prohibits transgender women and girls from participating in sanctioned school sporting events.

After:Governor’s challenger Kristi Noem hijacks website launched to ‘defend Title IX’ amid debate over transgender sports

South Dakota Governor Kristi Noem signs a bill Thursday, Feb. 3, 2022, at the State Capitol in Pierre, SD that will ban transgender women and girls from playing in school sports leagues that match their gender identity.

Part of the law reads as follows:

“Any interscholastic, intercollegiate, intramural, or club athletic, athletic, or team event that is sponsored or sanctioned by an accredited school, school district, association or activity organization, or institution of higher learning under control of either the Council of Regents or the Board of Technical Education shall be designated as one of the following, based on the biological sex at birth of participating students:

  • (1) Women, women or girls;
  • (2) Men, men or boys; Where
  • (3) Mixed or mixed.

Only female students, based on their biological sex, may participate in any team, sport or sporting event designated as women’s, women’s or girls’ only.”

South Dakota was one of the first states to pass such a law. More information can be found here.

Critical Race Theory

Critical Race Theory (CRT) is an academic theory that race is a social construct, that racism is not just the product of individual bias or prejudice, and that racism is embedded in legal systems and the country’s policies.

Senior K-12 and college education officials said CRT largely does not appear in South Dakota’s content standards or curriculum, but legislation was passed in the process nonetheless. of the recent legislative session to restrict the theory.

After:Governor Kristi Noem Signs Executive Order Limiting Critical Race Theory in K-12 Schools

Defined as a law intended to protect students and employees of institutions of higher education from divisive concepts, House Bill 1012 prohibits the South Dakota Board of Regents, or the Board of Technical Education, or any institution under their control :

  • cannot order or coerce a student to affirm, adopt or personally adhere to divisive concepts
  • may not require their students or employees to attend or participate in any training or orientation that teaches, advocates, acts on or promotes divisive concepts
  • cannot condition enrollment or participation in any course, training, or orientation on the basis of race or color.
  • may not authorize or expend funds for purposes prohibited by this Act

For more details on how this law works and how the state defines the “concept of division,” visit the state’s website. here.

Noem also signed an executive order, restricting Critical Race Theory to the K-12 level.

Medical Marijuana Certification

Some tinkerings to South Dakota’s medical marijuana law by state lawmakers are also in effect. And a pair of new laws that went into effect Friday could lower the hurdle for South Dakotans to get a medical marijuana ID card.

Until now, the Department of Health required a licensed physician in South Dakota to certify that their patient had a qualifying medical condition and would benefit from cannabis use.

And it has caused some hesitation among major health systems and medical providers who worry about the potential liability that could arise from recommending a drug that is not recognized under federal law.

The fact that only doctors, and not nurse practitioners or physician assistants, can certify patients has also created barriers for South Dakotans seeking a medical marijuana ID card.

So, with support from the medical industry, lawmakers and the governor gave their blessing to a law change that allows anyone licensed in South Dakota to prescribe drugs to humans to also certify patients with marijuana for medical purposes. And in doing so, these medical professionals are no longer recommending that their patients consume cannabis, only that they have a qualifying medical condition.

These conditions are “a chronic or debilitating disease or medical condition or its treatment that produces one or more of the following: cachexia or wasting syndrome; severe and debilitating pain; severe nausea; seizures; or severe and persistent muscle spasms, including those characteristic of multiple sclerosis.”

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