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Freedom Indiana Holds Rally Ahead Of LGBT Bills Hearing

The statehouse rotunda was filled with chants of, "equal protections, no exceptions" and "leave no 'T' behind" as Freedom Indiana and its supporters rallied ahead of a committee hearing on two key LGBT bills Wednesday.

The grassroots group has been pushing for "four words and a comma" to be added to the state's civil rights law ever since the heated debate over RFRA last year. They want legislation that provides protections for all Hoosiers and prohibits discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity.

"Indiana’s civil rights statutes should protect every single resident of this state no matter who they are or who they love," Evan Stoner said during the rally.

The Rules and Legislative Procedure Committee will hear SB100 and SB344 Wednesday afternoon. Both of the bills grant some civil rights protections to the LGBT community but allow religious exemptions. SB344 doesn't provide protections for the transgender community, instead moving that issue to a summer study committee.

"It [makes] me feel less than human almost and reminded me of a dark time in this nation’s history where the African Americans were not considered to be human," said Kimberly Acoff, a member of the transgender community. "And I don’t want us to move backwards as a nation, I want us to move forwards."

Another proposal dealing with LGBT rights has been dubbed the 'Super-RFRA' bill and quickly died in committee Wednesday morning.

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