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World Refugee Day gains attention following Pence’s legal battle

By Shelby Mullis TheStatehouseFile.com INDIANAPOLIS — In light of an international refugee crisis, a group of Hoosiers are taking steps to share the refugee experience. Debasree Dasgupta said it’s time for Americans to open their eyes on this year’s World Refugee Day. “It’s about creating awareness,” said Dasgupta, a University of Indianapolis Health Sciences professor. […]

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30 Laws in 30 Days: Working to get veterans the benefits they’ve earned

By Nicole Hernandez TheStatehouseFile.com  Editor’s note: This is the tenth in a series of stories about new laws that are taking effect, most of them on July 1. INDIANAPOLIS – For Vern Kahl, a five-year Navy veteran, the way the state government handles veterans care and benefits has been very frustrating. When Kahl, 64, came […]

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Families wait years to be united with children adopted from Democratic Republic of Congo

By Megan Powell TheStatehouseFile.com INDIANAPOLIS – Indiana has more families waiting to bring their children home from the Democratic Republic of the Congo than any other state in the United States. U.S. Sen. Joe Donnelly, D-Indiana, offered support and met with one of those families Wednesday morning, along with several parents who successfully adopted children […]

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Several prominent issues head to summer study committees

By Adrianna Pitrelli TheStatehouseFile.com INDIANAPOLIS – Civil rights issues related to gender identity and sexual orientation, Sunday alcohol sales, sexual misconduct in schools, and bettering the roads of Indiana will all high priority topics of discussion in the Indiana Statehouse this summer. The Legislative Council – a group of top lawmakers from both chambers – […]

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Bathroom guidelines for transgender students leave Pence, Ritz at odds

Staff Report TheStatehouseFile.com INDIANAPOLIS — Gov. Mike Pence Friday said the federal government has “no business” in mandating all public schools allow transgender students to use bathrooms based on their gender identity. “I have long believed that education is a state and local function,” Pence said in a statement. “Policies regarding the security and privacy […]

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Is RFRA in the rearview?

By Max Bomber TheStatehouseFile.com   INDIANAPOLIS — Despite the national attention surrounding the state’s Religious Freedom Restoration Act during last year’s the NCAA men’s Final Four, many visitors during this year’s women’s tournament felt comfortable in the city. Nearly 30,000 people came to Indianapolis for the tournament, including Steven Van Fleet who traveled from Connecticut to see […]

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Will traditional marriage remain a part of the state GOP platform?

By Adrianna Pitrelli TheStatehouseFile.com GREENWOOD, Ind. — A new push in the state Republican Party would drop traditional marriage from the state party platform. The current platform says, “We believe that strong families, based on marriage between a man and a woman, are the foundation of society.” But when the Indiana Republican Party Platform Committee met at […]

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Decades after RFK’s Indianapolis speech, his message of hope is spread

By Jasmine Otam TheStatehouseFile.com  INDIANAPOLIS ­– Hoosiers joined together at the Dr. Martin Luther King. Jr. Park Monday to pay tribute to a historic speech given in Indianapolis. On April 4, 1968—the night that Martin Luther King, Jr. was assassinated—Robert F. Kennedy gave a speech at the corner of 17th and Broadway. Kennedy was campaigning […]

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Vanity license plates return, but with limitations

Staff Report TheStatehouseFile.com INDIANAPOLIS —Hoosier drivers will now have more of a say in what goes on their license plate after the Indiana Bureau of Motor Vehicles announced they are bringing back the Personal License Plate Program. “I am pleased that we are able to return this very popular program to the public,” Kent Abernathy, […]

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“He” replaced with gender-neutral pronouns in statewide office descriptions

Staff Report TheStatehouseFile.com INDIANAPOLIS — Indiana law describing the roles and responsibilities of statewide officeholders will soon use gender-neutral pronouns. The Indiana code currently uses male pronouns, but Gov. Mike Pence signed House Bill 1173 into law Thursday, changing the language. “As a father, I cannot help but think about my daughters when I see references […]

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