The Ellettsville seal was created in 1985 to represent unity, knowledge, industry and religion and appears on city letterheads, fire and street department trucks as well any official documents.
But not everyone feels the cross is a good representation of the town’s religious beliefs. Freedom From Religion Foundation (FFRF) Attorney Patrick Elliott says his organization intervened after a number of Ellettsville residences complained anonymously about the seal.
Elliott says a majority of citizens want the seal to remain. But he says freedom of religion protects non-Christians who don’t agree with the symbol.
“It isn’t something they can will as a majority,” says Elliott.
But Ellettsville Town Council clerk Sandra Hash says she thinks the seal is representative of the community.
“I think it is symbolic of the town of Ellettsville, and I would really like to see the town seal stay in place,” says Hash.
Although the FFRF contacted Ellettsville city council requesting the cross to be removed from the seal last fall, no final decisions have been made.
“As long as the town continues to use the seal it will remain to be a violation so it seems if they’re not willing to change it, they may have to be forced to change it,” says Elliott.
Ellettsville town council officials say they are unlikely to take action unless a lawsuit is filed.