Election day is a little more than two months away. Between now and then, 44News will invite candidates to answer questions to help voters make decisions in various races.
Each candidate will be given 90 seconds to answer their question and 44news will not edit the answers. Tuesday night, candidate for Indiana State Senate District 49 Democrat Edie Hardcastle is speaking out.
Her question is, should Indiana adopt a hate crimes law?
Here’s what she had to say:
“Indiana is one of only five states without a hate crimes law. Unfortunately, hate-inspired incidents occur on a regular basis here, like the one this month in Carmel, Indiana where Nazi swastikas were painted on the walls of a Jewish synagogue.
This was a crime intended to provoke fear and make individuals feel unsafe in their own communities. But the only option prosecutors currently have, is to charge these perpetrators with vandalism. Hate crimes legislation would turn a hate crime into a separate, prosecutable offense.
We need to be more than be shocked and saddened when hate crimes occur. We should take action, to send the message that hate in Indiana is not tolerated. As Indiana works to attract new employers and retain workers, we need a law that makes it clear, Hoosiers value diversity and stand against hate.
Governor Holcomb has called for a hate crimes bill in Indiana. Saying: ‘Our state stands with the victims and their voices will not be silenced’, the only question now is, which of our legislators will answer the governor’s call to action?
When you vote this November, remember that I am the candidate in Senate District 49 who will take a stand against hate in our state and vote for hate crimes legislation.”