Indiana Statehouse

(Lauren Chapman/IPB News)

It took until 2020 for a Black lawmaker to become the leader of an Indiana state legislative caucus. The Indiana Senate Democrats last week elected Sen. Greg Taylor (D-Indianapolis) as minority leader.

(Brandon Smith/IPB News)

Republicans strengthened their grip on the Indiana House of Representatives in the 2020 election. The final Statehouse races were called Thursday.

Lauren Chapman/IPB News

Advocates rallied at the Statehouse Thursday for legislation to protect women.

Organizers say because Indiana does not have a law defining consent, sex without consent is not a crime unless there is force, threat of force, or incapacitation. A bill with bipartisan support to create that definition died without a hearing earlier this session.

Women4Change Indiana executive director Rima Shahid says her organization is putting pressure on lawmakers to pass comprehensive consent legislation.

Lauren Chapman/IPB News

Teachers once again gathered at the Statehouse, following up on their Red for Ed rally in November. The Indiana Coalition for Public Education demanded action from legislators.

Lauren Chapman/IPB News

Hoosiers gathered from across the state for the first LGBTQ Statehouse Day. A group from the ACLU of Indiana, who organized the event, spent the day speaking to lawmakers about trans issues.

Kit Malone has been an advocate for the last five years. 

“In a time, when trans people are increasingly under attack, both locally and nationally, we want to make sure our lawmakers see that we’re real people,” Malone says.

Malone says her logic is simple: once lawmakers and other Hoosiers meet and interact with trans people, it’s harder to see them as a threat. 

Justin Hicks /IPB News

Women gathered at the Indiana statehouse today to pressure lawmakers to support gender equality legislation. The rally highlighted wage discrimination and hostile work environments for pregnant women.

According to Women4Change Indiana, although women make up close to half of Indiana’s workforce, they get paid 21 percent less than men. The pay disparity gets significantly worse for minority women. 

Lauren Chapman/IPB News

Legislative leaders from both parties say they’re looking forward to Tuesday’s teacher rally at the Statehouse.

But Republicans and Democrats still seem split on the education issues driving the public demonstration.

Teacher pay, while not the only issue, is at the forefront of the education rally at the Statehouse. Educators are putting the onus on state lawmakers to provide adequate funding for a salary boost.