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South Dakota

S.D. transgender woman wins settlement in wrongful termination suit

Monday, September 16, 2013

RAPID CITY, S.D. — A transgender woman in South Dakota who was terminated from her job after she informed her employer that she would be taking steps to transition from male to female, has won a $50,000 settlement in her wrongful termination lawsuit.

Cori McCreery

Cori McCreery

Cori McCreery, 29, was fired in 2010 after telling her employer at Don’s Valley Market in Rapid City, S.D. that she would be transitioning on the job.

Lambda Legal filed a complaint on McCreery’s behalf in March 2012 with the EEOC, claiming that her termination constitutes illegal sex-based discrimination under Title VII, the section of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 which prohibits discrimination in the workplace.

A month later, in April 2012, the EEOC issued the historic Macy v. Holder decision clarifying that Title VII protects transgender employees from discrimination on the basis of sex because sex stereotyping is illegal.

Backed by the EEOC, McCreery’s settlement reflects the maximum statutory amount for a business with under 100 employees, and includes a public notice on the EEOC website, and a letter of apology and letter of recommendation for McCreery.

“This comprehensive settlement makes a strong statement about the EEOC’s commitment that discrimination against transgender workers will not be tolerated,” said Dru Levasseur, Transgender Rights Project Director for Lambda Legal. “The days of firing people on the basis of their gender identity or gender expression have passed.”

McCreery, who was born and raised in Rapid City, worked as a store clerk for the owner of Don’s Valley Market on and off for a total of five years at two separate businesses.

When re-hired in August 2010, she was promoted to supervisor three months into the job. But when she notified her employer that she would be transitioning on the job, she received initial assurance about her job security, but was fired shortly thereafter.

McCreery said she was told that she was “making other employees uncomfortable” and that her employer had a “7 million dollar investment to protect.”

“I’m so incredibly thrilled,” said McCreery. “This gives me hope. The day I was fired, I had no idea what I would do. I now feel a sense of closure and can focus on my future. No one should be fired just because of who they are.”

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58 more reader comments:

  1. Good for her!! I used to work with a Transgender female & she was so nice to work with b4 & after. Her personality never changed & it shouldn’t matter to anyone as long as he or she is happy!!!

    Posted on Tuesday, September 17, 2013 at 12:09am
  2. Good for you. You fought and won.

    Posted on Tuesday, September 17, 2013 at 12:09am
  3. Yuck!

    Posted on Tuesday, September 17, 2013 at 12:11am
  4. Bye.

    Replied on Tuesday, September 17, 2013 at 12:34am
  5. And I say the same for you Shanequia

    Replied on Tuesday, September 17, 2013 at 1:03am
  6. Yup, you made the yuck list!

    Replied on Tuesday, September 17, 2013 at 1:03am
  7. You should be ashamed of yourself you Self Loathing bitch.

    Replied on Tuesday, September 17, 2013 at 1:27am
  8. your race would of been looked down back then as well.. Did you hear of the soap era? where they thought they could clean the african skin?

    Replied on Tuesday, September 17, 2013 at 1:49am
  9. So said the whites of American slaves. It was not right then, it is not right now, and it will never be right.

    Replied on Tuesday, September 17, 2013 at 4:01am
  10. congrats!!

    Posted on Tuesday, September 17, 2013 at 12:14am
  11. Shanequia Young why even say anything? Being African American you should really rethink and understand that people are going through the same oppression that african Americans and poor people faced not so long ago. How would you feel if someone said YUCK to cases won on basis of racial discrimination? They cant choose who they are any more than you can!

    Posted on Tuesday, September 17, 2013 at 12:26am
  12. Problem is many people do say yuck when AA's win a suit. What should be said to her is that We trans people are in every community including the AA. If y'all pretend that we don't exist regardless of your efforts @Tabitha Mcostlin you are both the same.

    Replied on Tuesday, September 17, 2013 at 6:37am
  13. Again YUCK!

    Posted on Tuesday, September 17, 2013 at 12:37am
  14. Poof I'm a fairy and you are gone!

    Replied on Tuesday, September 17, 2013 at 1:12am
  15. Shanequia quit being a cunt!

    Replied on Tuesday, September 17, 2013 at 1:28am
  16. she can't help it @ Randy, she's too ghetto, or do you find that offensive?

    Replied on Tuesday, September 17, 2013 at 1:50am
  17. I agree with tabitha. People are so ignorant.

    Posted on Tuesday, September 17, 2013 at 12:41am
  18. Congrats to her.

    Posted on Tuesday, September 17, 2013 at 12:43am
  19. AWESOME

    Posted on Tuesday, September 17, 2013 at 12:48am
  20. Well there we go. Guess that means that women/blacks cant vote. Lets start killing off female offspring. What else? Oh lets trade chickens for wives because someone thinks treating women as humans thats gross too. People like you are why activists are rolling over in their assassinated graves having died so you could spue your intolerance and hate and ignorance towards others because you dont agree. Lets see how many rights you have if they were all based on what people think are yuck.

    Posted on Tuesday, September 17, 2013 at 12:56am
  21. awesome

    Posted on Tuesday, September 17, 2013 at 1:02am
  22. My wife is transgendered and we are having problems with social security because of her gender change. We are in the process of trying to find a lawyer to help us. I’ve written to the ACLU amongst others

    Posted on Tuesday, September 17, 2013 at 1:11am
  23. So glad to hear she won the case!

    Posted on Tuesday, September 17, 2013 at 1:20am
  24. good

    Posted on Tuesday, September 17, 2013 at 1:20am
  25. I am so glad to hear that she won, my situation is a little different, I was fired, they said was for being rude to a customer, two days before I was going to start dressing at work. I had a Performance and Customer Service Award less than six months prior to being fired. This is a larger company, I do have a suit, but it is still in the waiting mode. It would be nice to find someone that would help me now, as I am out of unemployment and still have not had found a job. I am losing everything.

    Posted on Tuesday, September 17, 2013 at 1:22am
  26. Good job! Sorry ya had to go thru that though sweetheart!

    Posted on Tuesday, September 17, 2013 at 1:46am
  27. @Sheniquia , her name explains it all

    Posted on Tuesday, September 17, 2013 at 1:51am
  28. Yes! Good for her!

    Posted on Tuesday, September 17, 2013 at 2:22am
  29. CONGRATULATIONS BITCH

    Posted on Tuesday, September 17, 2013 at 2:27am
  30. I don’t care what sex she is or was. She looks like a drug addict and doesn’t know how to look like a women. Pathetic!

    Posted on Tuesday, September 17, 2013 at 2:33am
  31. Well aren't we judging. Take a look in the mirror. What beauty do you possess to judge someone elses'?

    Replied on Tuesday, September 17, 2013 at 4:03am
  32. You go girl!

    Posted on Tuesday, September 17, 2013 at 2:35am
  33. @ John Fijalek, you are a beautiful looking couple. Natural, real, I see the love. Good luck.

    Posted on Tuesday, September 17, 2013 at 2:39am
  34. You go girl!!!!

    Posted on Tuesday, September 17, 2013 at 2:40am
  35. Congrats sister, and you are as inspirational as you are pretty.

    Posted on Tuesday, September 17, 2013 at 3:03am
  36. Pretty! Ugh, she’s street trash

    Posted on Tuesday, September 17, 2013 at 3:12am
  37. Good for her!!!!

    Posted on Tuesday, September 17, 2013 at 3:23am
  38. @Aaron, if you are talking to me, you don’t know me!!! You hicks who live in the sticks don’t get it. She should have at least got a descent nights rest before posting that pic.

    Posted on Tuesday, September 17, 2013 at 3:34am
  39. Good for her!

    Posted on Tuesday, September 17, 2013 at 3:46am
  40. Hooray!!!

    Posted on Tuesday, September 17, 2013 at 3:59am
  41. Yay! I can’t prove it, but believe that’s why I was bounced.

    Posted on Tuesday, September 17, 2013 at 4:09am
  42. I guess ur a cross dressing hag too Jessica Steele! And make sure you spell my name correctly BITCH!! Really miss me with your bullshit! Post your pic you rachet thing!

    Posted on Tuesday, September 17, 2013 at 4:20am
  43. Obviously you're very ignorant on this subject. If you actually want to learn, then ask me, I'll be happy to answer and help. However, if you're unwilling to learn and only say mean things to make yourself feel better, then perhaps you should rethink what you're doing and get off the page. Thanks. <3

    Replied on Tuesday, September 17, 2013 at 4:35am
  44. im sure shanequia has experienced discrimination being an obvious hood rat and all, she should be more sympathetic you'd think lol

    Replied on Tuesday, September 17, 2013 at 9:27pm
  45. Randy isn’t a cunt is what you want to be?

    Posted on Tuesday, September 17, 2013 at 4:22am
  46. your behind a computer.... I would say more but it's clear how dumb you are and I know I will be wasting my time since that thing between your eyes is smaller than my dogs =-D

    Replied on Tuesday, September 17, 2013 at 8:56pm
  47. Shanequla, you are seriously a cunt. You ugly bitch, now I know I said some ugly things about this person, cross dressing is not what she’s doing bitch! You are one ugly black ass bitch.!!!

    Posted on Tuesday, September 17, 2013 at 4:40am
  48. Do what u do best take it up ur ass and suck dick

    Posted on Tuesday, September 17, 2013 at 4:45am
  49. Lynn Johnson

    Posted on Tuesday, September 17, 2013 at 6:21am
  50. Wow…the uber judgmental and/or racist comments on this thread are just crazy. Wow…

    Posted on Tuesday, September 17, 2013 at 6:39am
  51. I’m just glad she won XXX CONGRATULATIONS Sister ,don’t pay no attention to the complete ARSEHOLES …….. Fuckin hold your head up proud ,Wether you got a good nights sleep or not !

    Posted on Tuesday, September 17, 2013 at 7:56am
  52. Gee some people !!!!!

    Posted on Tuesday, September 17, 2013 at 8:34am
  53. good for you lady.

    Posted on Tuesday, September 17, 2013 at 2:58pm
  54. Shanequia Young she is yuke did you see her profile she all fat and yuke is a good word for her. gross fat black woman

    Posted on Tuesday, September 17, 2013 at 4:30pm
  55. Everyone deserves to be treated equally regardless of ones sexual preferance and for someone to make a comment yuck ur only making yourself look ignorant because who are u too judge someone!!!!!

    Posted on Tuesday, September 17, 2013 at 10:31pm
  56. Being transgender isn't related to sexual preference, though they can be interrelated. But I commend you for your support and open mindedness.

    Replied on Wednesday, September 18, 2013 at 12:43am
  57. yeah for you girl

    Posted on Tuesday, September 17, 2013 at 11:24pm