From: President Saunders &. Sec-Treas Reyes
Sent: Monday, April 6, 2015 5:07 PM
Subject: We Made Change Happen in Indiana
Last week, less than 24 hours after AFSCME announced we were pulling our 2015 Women’s Conference out of Indianapolis, Ind., because Gov. Mike Pence had signed a discriminatory law, the governor reversed course.
Governor Pence announced just a day after the law became public that he wanted the state legislature to amend his un-American law that legalized businesses treating customers unfairly, simply because they are gay or lesbian. Late last week, the legislature sent the amended language to Gov. Pence, who signed it immediately. While it does not go as far as we would like, it no longer authorizes discrimination against LGBT citizens, which was critical for AFSCME and our allies.
That’s a win for the people of Indiana and AFSCME is proud to have played a significant role in standing up to those who would use the law to discriminate based on their own personal bias or troubling political agenda. Since we demanded and won change, AFSCME will keep the 2015 Women’s Conference in Indianapolis, Indiana, October 9th - 11th.
As an editorial in the Indianapolis Star notes, the potential loss of events like ours was instrumental in showing Governor Pence the error of his and right-wing extremists’ ways. Governors in other states, including Arkansas and Georgia appeared to take notice, waffling last week on similar discriminatory laws that were pending in their states.
AFSCME will continue to work tirelessly with our allies to build on what we did in Indiana over the last week to make sure that all Americans are treated equally. This is the type of change that our 1.6 million members bring when we take a stand together and demand better for our nation.