Indiana Black Legislative Caucus hosts call to action days at statehouse following incident at meeting

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INDIANAPOLIS – Starting Monday, the Indiana Black Legislative Caucus is hosting a call to action at the Indiana Statehouse. 

Community members are invited to voice their opinions on a recent incident where IBLC members felt they were disrespected while arguing over a bill. 

IBLC is hoping to have their demands met following the disruption a few weeks ago. They also want people to hear from the communities that will be impacted by the bills they feel are discriminatory. 

Starting at 10 a.m., the IBLC will set the stage for community members to come to a reserved space in the statehouse.   

It follows an argument where IBLC members were booed while discussing their concerns over changes with the South Bend School District. 

They say it’s not the first instance of discrimination they’ve felt. Now they want change so something like that doesn’t happen again. They are hoping to have their demands met for reprimands, training, and renewed safety measures. 

“I think we’re pretty good on that. I’ve had conversations with the state superintendent of police, they are going to have extra security on these days and also while we’re in the legislature. It was just a little mishap that happened last week when the incidents went down, the officer just wasn’t at the place he was supposed to be at. So we want to make sure the chamber is covered at all times,” said IBLC Chair Robin Shackleford. 

Shackleford says it’s also important to hear directly from those who are impacted by proposed legislation. 

“I think some of our members on the other side don’t really understand how harsh the impact is on these communities on these bills, so it will be a great way to hear directly from the community that they can talk to them, send in notes and see. So I think that it’s extremely important that everyone gets to hear from the community,” Shackleford said. 

Last week after the argument at the statehouse, House Speaker Todd Hutson said he would try to do better to control the room. He also encouraged everyone to treat others with respect. He told our partners at the Indy Star they will continue to have conversations and all want to do better. 

People can sign up for two to three hour shifts until 5 p.m. The call to action days start Monday until Thursday and then again next week from Monday through Thursday. 

Prominent community leaders are also scheduled to be there, including members of the NAACP, Indiana Black Expo, and the Concerned Clergy. 

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