Just two weeks after the official launch of Indiana Competes, our coalition of Indiana business leaders urging lawmakers to extend explicit non-discrimination protections to all Hoosiers, we are proud to report that our initial membership has doubled. Now, more than 300 businesses and associations have signed the Indiana Competes business pledge calling for a law protecting gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender Hoosiers from discrimination in employment, housing, and in public spaces like businesses, hotels, and public transportation. The coalition makes the case that a statewide measure is crucial to growing Indiana’s economy and remaining competitive.
Recent additions to the coalition include the NCAA national office – Indianapolis, the Indiana Association of REALTORS®, Allison Transmission, Appirio, OneZone Inc, and the Indiana Restaurant and Lodging Association. Bernard Franklin, the NCAA national office’s Chief Inclusion Officer & Executive Vice President, Education and Community Engagement, said today:
“The NCAA national office in Indianapolis supports making Indiana a welcoming and inclusive place for people to work, live and enjoy. The national office is proud to join Indiana Competes as the coalition works to establish fair and equitable policies for all.”
Kassy Lauer of Evansville’s Toast added: “The statewide support to prohibit discrimination is so important because even the perception of intolerance can be devastating to Indiana’s reputation. It is legal to discriminate in Indiana, and it shouldn’t be. We cannot be viewed as a state that permits discrimination because most businesses have no tolerance for intolerance.”
Indiana Competes officially launched on December 2, with launch announcement events hosted in cities across the state – including in Indianapolis, South Bend, Bloomington, Evansville, Lafayette, Griffith and Fort Wayne.
Bruce Bright, 2015 President of the Indiana Association of REALTORS®, said it’s time for all businesses in Indiana to come together in support of comprehensive non-discrimination protections for all Hoosiers. He said:
“Joining Indiana Competes was an easy decision for us. It’s an extension of the REALTORS® Code of Ethics, and we have operated on this basis for many years. Our code prohibits a REALTOR® from discriminating in professional services and employment practices on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity. We support the call of our state’s major employers to remove this roadblock to the recruitment and retention of the workforce they need to compete. It’s time to put this issue behind us.”
Click here to read – and sign onto – the Indiana Competes business pledge, and don’t miss the full list of Hoosier businesses that have signed the pledge.