Indiana College Presidents Speak Out Against ‘Religious Freedom’ Law

http://chronicle.com/article/Indiana-College-Presidents/228955/

The Indiana’s Religious Freedom Restoration Act is causing national controversy and outrage; Gov. Mike Pence signed it into law last Thursday. This article addresses how university leaders, specifically university presidents in the state  are handling this new law. “Seven institutions in the state — Ball State, Butler, DePauw, Indiana, Purdue, and Valparaiso Universities and Hanover College — have issued statements promising to honor their nondiscrimination policies. Most, but not all, of the statements go on to condemn the law”. The decision to release a statement came about when many prospective students and parents expressed their concerns regarding this new law and they want to know where these universities stand. “University leaders had to make a decision: Do they speak out against the law? How do they strike a balance between protecting the free exchange of ideas on their campuses and promising to be inclusive?” It is obvious that university presidents have to be careful when speaking about political matters, or social issues. However, this law has caused many perspective students and faculty to reconsider whether or not they want to live in a state and go to an institution that might not be very welcoming. Although some university presidents have shied away from taking a strong stance on this issue, others have spoken out because they believe it is their responsibility to do so. Those institutions who have released statements have received positive reactions.

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4 responses to “Indiana College Presidents Speak Out Against ‘Religious Freedom’ Law

  1. Fascinating how this bill is affecting the minds of potential students. I’m glad the students and their parents are at least aware of what is going on and thinking about the culture and environment it could potentially create. I was under the impression though that the bill only applies to private organizations/institutions?

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    • Yes it does; but I think it’s important for prospective students and their parents to know the opinion of the university because that student is going to be living in the state for technically 4 or 5 years. I think it’s important for a student to align with their institution, and in some cases some students may not feel like the state and even the universities are very welcoming.

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