Meet the I-183 Plaintiffs: Kasandra Reddington

This post is part of a series featuring the incredible group of Montanans who have stepped forward to challenge the constitutionality of I-183. To read more about the ACLU of Montana’s lawsuit, click here.

Photo of Kasandra ReddingtonAt age 15, Kasandra Reddington traveled the short distance from Shepherd, Montana to enroll in courses at MSU-Billings. She would go on to graduate with a degree in psychology and concentrations in biology and neuroscience. While on campus, Kasandra threw herself into the MSU-B student community. She ran the school newspaper for a year, helped start up the Psi-Chi honors society and psychology club, volunteered at the Women and Genders Studies center, the Out Club, and was a student senator.

She describes herself as a “traditional super nerdy girl,” with a constant appetite to dig into subjects such as science, philosophy, neuroscience, psychology, and pop culture. Now at age 21, she plans to pursue a PhD in Behavioral Neuroscience.

While at MSU-Billings, Kasandra was interviewed about her experiences as a transgender woman. Death threats followed. Unfortunately, “As horrible is as this is to say, it’s kind of a day in the life of a trans person to experience horrible negativity,” Kasandra explained.

Kasandra made the decision to add her name to the list of plaintiffs against I-183 because, “It’s something I can do for the current and next generations to make things easier, more normal and better. That way, they don’t have to fight for their existence like I do.”

She continued, “I-183 would directly impact me because I’m so publicly out and I so publicly go to public spaces that I risk the chance, especially in Billings, of somebody noticing me. That could result in possible sexual or physical assault against me. It could get me fired, I could lose my housing. In Helena, it’s different because we have a nondiscrimination ordinance but if I-183 passes, then I’m not protected for housing or working [by the NDO].” If I-183 passes, “I’m not allowed to be a productive member of society because of this bill.”

I-183 “directly impacts me because it then has to go to a vote, and it (that vote) shows how much other Montanans believe that I exist, or care that I exist. So it negatively impacts me emotionally and spiritually.”

“When you have a bill that directly attacks your existence, and directly attacks your security, I think it makes you feel like you can’t even go outside or be a part of the community. Peripherally, it affects me because I am a human. And I’m a part of the community and I have a lot of trans friends. It affects my partner, and my family. It affects every part of who I am. Basically, it’s an attack on my existence.”

Kasandra is 21 years old. (Preferred pronouns: she, her)