IBLC: Fight for inclusive hate crimes law continues


State Rep. Robin Shackleford (D-Indianapolis), chair of the Indiana Black Legislative Caucus (IBLC), issued the following statement after Gov. Eric Holcomb signed a hate crimes bill (Senate Bill 198) into law that does not provide protections for all Hoosiers:

“Today should be a day for celebration, because so many of us have fought for years for a hate crimes law. But we are not celebrating today.

“This is not a hate crimes law, because it doesn’t protect everyone. This law excludes so many people that supporters should be ashamed to call it a comprehensive effort to stop hate crimes. By keeping references to gender and gender identity out of the law, we are telling more than half the people of this state they do not matter.

“The members of the IBLC also are concerned about the process that was used to create this law. It would seem that every effort was made to keep the public from knowing what was going on until it was too late. That is an insult to the multitudes of people and organizations who have fought long and hard to see Indiana pass a hate crimes law.

“At times like this, I think about people like State Rep. Gregory W. Porter (D-Indianapolis), who has spent the better part of the past 20 years to pass a hate crimes law. We share his disappointment, but we also know that his fighting spirit will guide us as we keep fighting for a hate crimes law that protects everyone.”

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