- The state of Indiana has proposed legislation that is aimed at shielding religious freedom.
- Senate Bill 101 would prohibit a governmental entity from substantially burdening a person's exercise of religion. Exceptions may be made if the governmental entity can demonstrate that the burden will further governmental interest and that it is the least restrictive means of furthering governmental interest.
- A number of businesses, including at least one local hospital, are opposing the legislation.
If Senate Bill 101 passes, it could pave the way for other states to propose similar legislation. A spokesperson for Eskenazi Health in Indianapolis told INDYSTAR it feared the legislation could create a "gray area" where its employees could decline to treat patients by claiming religious objections to patients' personal characteristics. Jessica Barth, Eskenazi's vice president of legal affairs and chief counsel, said that the law could conflict with federal regulations and accreditation standards that require care to be provided without bias. She said it would also affect the hospital's ability to discipline an employee for violating hospital non-discrimination policies.