A new and exciting movement is sweeping across Indiana as new and old supporters for equality call for change. With 13 states now legalizing same-sex marriage, Indiana feels more pressure than ever since their neighbor of Illinois has joined the ranks of marriage equality. New voices are speaking out in support for marriage equality and their message is clear.
They are saying NO to House Joint Resolution 6 (HRJ6), a bill that will write a ban on same-sex marriage into the constitution. Indiana has long been a red and conservative state, so this proposed constitutional ban on same-sex marriage is not surprising.
What is surprising is the increasing number of opponents that the bill is facing! Educational institutions are now openly opposing HRJ6. Among the first to speak up for equality was Indiana University, followed by Depauw University and Wabash College.
Companies that have a strong and influential presence in Indiana have joined forces with equality groups to form coalition known as Freedom Indiana, which is dedicated to fighting HRJ6 and spreading the word to the community the negative impact it would have for Indiana as a whole. Among companies that have joined Freedom Indiana are Eli Lily, Cummins, and Simon Malls.
Why do they oppose the ban? The leaders of the companies say that it prevents them from bringing talented workers into Indiana.
John Mills of Cummins says “This bill works counter to diversity and inclusion. In order to have a more welcoming environment we have to have that inclusion to have that welcoming environment. As we are a global company trying to attract, recruit and maintain top talent.”
Indiana lawmakers seem to agree with this point as was demonstrated by the City-County Council proposing a resolution that would eliminate same-sex marriage ban. The council had all 15 Democrats and 7 Republicans supporting the resolution. Mayor Ballard already signed the resolution proposed by the Council last Friday.
“We want to send a loud, clear message, and that is that Indianapolis and Indiana are places that are welcoming for all to live, work, play and raise families,” council Vice President John Barth said. “Simply put, our city needs to attract and retain citizens who want to work with us to make this the best place it can be.”
If you care about defeating HRJ6 and would like more information, please visit Freedom Indiana’s website here. You can follow the tab that says Take Action and It will give you information on petitions, help you with contacting your legislators and even provide a link to donate to the cause.