California DMV Employee Turns Name Change Into Harassment

Amber Yust, a transgender woman living in California, went to San Francisco’s DMV to get her name changed on her driver’s license. She had a court ordered name change and was easily able to get a new driver’s license with her new name.

But her interactions with the DMV didn’t stop there. The employee who had processed her name change wasn’t happy that he had helped a transgender person. So he took Yust’s personal information from the DMV office, and mailed a letter to her home, calling her an abomination, telling her she was going to hell and that she had made a very evil decision. The letter came complete with quotes from the Bible.

Yust received this letter at her home address on Monday. Turns out that not only did the DMV employee neglect his duties to treat people who come into the DMV respectfully, but he breached security and personally harassed Amber by using the home address she provided to the DMV.

“I was shocked to receive this letter from the person who processed my paperwork at the DMV,” she said. “I would never have expected that a DMV employee could use information from my name change application to reach out and personally attack me. This has been a traumatic experience for me and I want to ensure that nothing like this happens to anyone else.”

Yust has reached out to the Transgender Law Center to look into the incident and possibly represent her. You can also urge the DMV to look into this case, and hold any employees accountable, here.

“This was an egregious act committed by a government employee,” said Masen Davis, Executive Director of the Transgender Law Center. “Transgender people deserve to be treated with respect at agencies like the DMV. What happened to Amber is despicable, and we intend to do everything we can to hold the responsible parties accountable and to prevent this from happening again.”

Hopefully, the DMV employee won’t get away with taking personal information  from the job and using it to harass DMV customers. No one should get hate mail at their home after simply making a trip to the DMV to change their license. The harassment Amber faced was inappropriate and far over the line, and the California DMV needs to hold its employees accountable.

Photo credit: Michael Ocampo