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(INDIANAPOLIS, Ind., February 19, 2019) The Indy Chamber issued the following statement after the Indiana Senate acted today to remove enumerated, personal characteristics and law enforcement training from SB12, which had been a comprehensive and effective proposal to protect Hoosiers from bias-motivated crimes that passed the Senate Public Policy Committee amid strong support from business, community and faith leaders:

(The following statement can be attributed to Indy Chamber President & CEO Michael Huber.)

“Today’s action on Senate Bill 12 is a disappointing setback for Indiana, for our business climate and our collective conscience as Hoosiers.

“For far too long, Indiana has been one of a few states still turning a blind eye to the issue of bias crimes. As amended, SB12 does nothing to help us escape that list, or provide clarity on this issue with substance and specifics. It would do little to protect our fellow citizens in any effective way from violence and vandalism motivated by hate.

“And instead of signaling that Indiana is open for business, it shuts out opportunity by discouraging a diverse workforce and the employers who follow. It would put us on the defensive and playing catch-up – again.

“There’s still time for the General Assembly to stand with Governor Holcomb, and restore SB12 to the version authored by Senators Alting and Bonachek that earned an overwhelming vote of confidence from the Senate Public Policy Committee. Indiana still has time to be a leader instead of a laggard in human rights and economic development.

“But a bill without specifics can’t make an effective law – it would amount to lip service, fooling no one: Not the business community, not the talented people we’d be turning away or the companies making employment and investment decisions, and not the voters of Indiana.”

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About The Indy Chamber:

The Indy Chamber is the voice of progress and improvement for the Indianapolis region’s business community. With membership of nearly 2,000 businesses in the Indianapolis region, the Indy Chamber is leading the effort to strengthen the business climate, improve the state of education, revitalize neighborhoods and enhance the region’s workforce. For more information, visit IndyChamber.com.

Media Contacts:

Joe Pellman, Indy Chamber, 317.464.2251, jpellman@indychamber.com