INDIANAPOLIS — Business and faith leaders, as well as members from the LGBT community and their allies from across Indiana met before the interim study committee today to make the case for why the state needs to adopt nondiscrimination protections based on sexual orientation and gender identity.
Last year, Indiana came under firestorm after a religious refusal bill was signed into law that legalized discrimination against lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender individuals.
“We believe we are long past the time where our state needs to stand up firmly and say, ‘no one who resides in our Hoosier State, nor any of our guests, should be subject to the potential of discrimination,’” Michael O’Connor of Elli Lilly & Company said before the committee. “Any statement or legislation that does not make it clear that we stand against any potential discrimination is simply not enough!”
Earlier this year, members of Indiana Competes fought for nondiscrimination protections for LGBT Hoosiers and visitors to ensure no one can be fired from their jobs, removed from their homes, or denied public services because of their sexual orientation or gender identity. The legislation eventually failed.
The businesses of Indiana Competes remain committed to extending protections from discrimination to all Hoosiers.
“Equality is a core value at Salesforce and as a company, we are committed to protecting our employees and customers from discrimination. We strongly urge the legislature to introduce, and pass, a clear, unambiguous bill that adds protections for Hoosiers on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity to our existing state anti-discrimination law,” Salesforce said in a statement.
Shannon Kiely Heider with Cummins added:
“Cummins works very hard to attract the best and brightest employees to Indiana. Competition for these employees is intense- especially for those with the technical skills we need to compete in a complex and global economy. These workers expect and demand a diverse workplace and they want to live in high quality communities.”
Indiana Competes will urge the interim study committee to recommend the addition of sexual orientation and gender identity to Indiana’s civil rights law.