Opponents and supporters of a proposed Indiana hate crimes law are arguing their positions before state legislators. A state Senate committee opened a hearing Monday morning on a bill that would create a law specifically against crimes fueled by biases regarding traits such as race, religion and sexual orientation.
As they did in January 2018, supporters of hate crimes legislation rallied Tuesday in the Indiana Statehouse to again push lawmakers to add a bias-motivated crime statute to the Indiana law books. Advocates from a broad array of groups, including business, education, nonprofits and faith-based organizations, were on-hand to applaud and cheer as legislators and community leaders called for Indiana to join the 45 other states with hate crimes law.
The priorities for Indiana House Republicans this year align with Gov. Eric Holcomb’s agenda, but one significant issue did not make the list: a hate crimes bill.
In an effort to remove Indiana from a list of five states without hate crimes legislation, lawmakers have filed three separate bills so far in the Indiana General Assembly, but the latest measure does not specify the classes of individuals and groups who would be protected.
Indiana lawmakers are set to begin their four-month legislative session, facing a tight state budget picture and a possibly contentious debate over adopting a state hate crimes law.
Among the biggest issues the 2019 General Assembly will have to contend with is the Department of Child Services, which is still reeling after a tumultuous year that saw a leader abruptly resign and a national group identify several shortcomings in the department’s operations. Gov. Eric Holcomb is calling on lawmakers to devote significant financial resources to the struggling department, and all four legislative leaders say their caucuses plan to make DCS a top priority.
The spray-painting of a swastika outside a suburban Indianapolis synagogue this summer was the final straw for Republican Gov. Eric Holcomb, who quickly called for Indiana to join the 45 states that have hate crime laws.
Legislative leaders to focus on DCS funding, teacher pay in ‘extraordinarily difficult’ budget session
In what the Indiana House Speaker said is likely to be an “extraordinarily difficult” budget session, Indiana’s legislative leaders plan to focus their efforts during this year’s legislative session on budget-impacting legislation, such as funding for the embattled Department of Child Services and increasing teacher pay.
Indiana lawmakers returned to the Statehouse on Tuesday for the ceremonial start to the new legislative session.
Two Republican state lawmakers have released draft legislation that would address Indiana’s lack of a hate crimes law by giving judges the ability to consider bias as an aggravating factor when considering prison sentences.
A central Indiana woman allegedly left a note on a neighbor’s home filled with racist slurs targeting the family’s black son and warning “this is a white neighborhood.”
Robert Gregory Bowers killed eight men and three women at a Pittsburgh synagogue on Saturday before a tactical police team tracked him down and shot him, according to state and federal affidavits made public on Sunday. The gunman is set to appear in federal court Monday morning, and prosecutors are planning to seek the death penalty.
Several hours of testimony before a legislative study committee charged with examining a potential hate crimes law for Indiana heavily underscored one central point: there are many opinions and no common ground.
Federal prosecutors say they’ve made arrests in connection to anti-Semitic graffiti that was spray-painted at a Carmel synagogue last month.
Even as Indiana lawmakers from both parties continue to echo Gov. Eric Holcomb’s call for hate crime legislation, the deep divisions that foiled previous attempts to pass a bias-motivated crime bill appear to still be entrenched.
Republican Indiana Gov. Eric Holcomb is calling on the General Assembly to pass a hate crimes bill after someone spray-painted anti-Semitic graffiti at a suburban Indianapolis synagogue. Holcomb said Monday he’ll meet with lawmakers, legal experts, corporate leaders and “citizens of all stripes who are seeking to find consensus on this issue so that, once and for all, we can move forward as a state."
The American Civil Liberties Union of Indiana’s Transgender Education and Advocacy Program is organizing an “Ask Me Anything” event starting at noon Wednesday on Facebook Live, featuring advocates Lo Ray and Michelle Young.
Indiana lawmakers are poised to wrap up this year’s legislative session without taking action to boost the chances of Indianapolis luring Amazon’s second headquarters and its tempting promise of 50,000 high-paying jobs.
Indiana lawmakers have reached halftime in this year’s legislative session, which has been marked more by plans deferred and legislation killed than major accomplishments.