Indiana lawmakers to discuss ‘Don’t Say Gay’ bill Monday

Lawmakers to discuss similar 'Don't Say Gay' legislation
Lawmakers to discuss similar 'Don't Say Gay' legislation(WPTA21)
Published: Feb. 17, 2023 at 6:08 PM EST
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FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WPTA) - Indiana House lawmakers are scheduled to discuss a bill that is similar to a Florida law banning the discussion of gender identity and sexual orientation in early grades.

The two page bill is one of several proposals from legislators that focuses on how schools must handle controversial social issues.

HB1608 was written by Rep. Michelle Davis, a Republican. The bill reads in part, “A school, an employee or staff member of a school, may not provide any instruction to a student in kindergarten through grade 3 in which the goal or purpose of the instruction is to study, explore, or inform students about sexual orientation, gender identity, or certain other concepts.”

The American Civil Liberties Union of Indiana is calling for a protest at the statehouse Monday to show opposition to the bill. Katie Blair with the ACLU says it’s an attack on LGBTQ+ youth in the state.

“The themes of this bill are very similar to the ‘Don’t Say Gay’ bill in Florida. Why this is happening in Indiana? I don’t know,” Blair said. “It’s seeking to solve a problem that does not exist and it’s going to be harmful to youth.”

Supporters of the bill have said it would be meant to encourage parents to discuss topics of gender identity and sexual orientation, not the schools.

21Investigates reached out to the Indiana House Republicans for comment on this story but have not heard back.