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House OKs bias bill lacking gender protections

House members voted 57-39 Tuesday to advance the bill.

Posted: Mar 26, 2019 8:27 PM

INDIANAPOLIS (AP) - The Indiana House has approved hate crimes legislation that doesn't specifically list gender identity, age or gender among its protected traits.

House members voted 57-39 Tuesday to advance the bill. The Senate must either agree to the changes made by the House or send it on to a joint House-Senate conference committee to resolve any differences.

The House vote came one day after the chamber unexpectedly adopted hate crimes language in an amended, unrelated bill.

The language refers to an existing state bias crimes reporting statute that mentions color, creed, disability, national origin, race, religion and sexual orientation, but doesn't explicitly cover age, sex or gender identity.

The revised bill says bias can also be considered due to the "victim's or the group's real or perceived characteristic, trait, belief, practice, association, or other attribute."

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