We want to provide a brief update on ACPA’s on-going response to Indiana's passage and subsequent revision of its Religious Freedom Restoration Act. This legislation catalyzed coast-to-coast controversy. Opponents believed it would give business owners the license to discriminate against LGBT identified persons.
- ACPA formally lodged our protest of this legislation with the Governor of the State of Indiana as well as the President of the Senate and Speaker of the House. In addition, we hosted a MoveOn petition (View Here) which 1518 ACPA members signed. Thank you!
- We delivered these signatures to the Governor’s office.
- We met with all of our peer higher education associations who have contracts to host meetings in Indiana over the next five years and worked with them to apply pressure to the legislature through direct calls.
- We worked with advocates in Indianapolis who gave us great counsel on what they needed most.
- We extended our support and encouragement to our members and colleagues who work in Indiana. This was a very stressful experience for many of them.
We are pleased that the legislature amended the provisions of the bill in a compromise that was accepted by local businesses and advocates.
We are watching every state in the United States with pending legislation of this type. We are also watching each nation where we have members who need our support.
We will aggressively protest what we believe to be deliberate and regressive legislative that diminishes human dignity and equal treatment under the law.
We will also support the efforts of local advocates and educators who are “moving the ball forward” in ways that they believe are appropriate.
In most cases, we will not elect to boycott, but rather join with local voices in those places to protest in ways that are clear and effective while not bringing harm to our members or their institutions.
We are mindful that the legislature of Indiana made a decision that may hurt our college and university members in ways that may impact enrollment and retention. We want to do everything we can to prevent that type of impact on campuses where people are working hard to provide a great education for students.
We also want to share a compelling post-Indiana bill revision analysis by Jim Oleske, Associate Professor of Law at Lewis & Clark Law School and author of two upcoming articles in the University of Colorado Law Review and the Harvard Civil Rights-Civil Liberties Law Review. This Q & A was originally published in The Oregonian/Oregon Live on April 11, 2015. The interviewer posing the questions is George Rede. Oleske is answering. (See Attachment).
Thank you very much.