Bill to protect vets from discrimination passes Senate

A bill to prohibit employers from discriminating against veterans is one step closer to becoming law after it passed the Indiana Senate on Tuesday.

House Bill 1242, authored by Rep. Martin Carbaugh, R-Fort Wayne, would ban an employer from refusing to hire anyone because of his or her status as a veteran of the U.S. military. It also requires the Indiana Civil Rights Commission to enforce alleged violations of the practice.

“It’s a dishonor to these brave men and women to allow employment discrimination to continue,” said the bill’s sponsor, Sen. Jim Banks, R-Columbia City, in a prepared statement.

“Indiana’s jobless rate for post-9/11 veterans is more than twice as high as the state unemployment rate, and we can’t let anything get in the way of our veterans securing a career after their service,” Banks said. “This legislation sends a message that Indiana cares for its veterans and will continue to advocate for them.”

The legislation also includes provisions to protect current Indiana National Guard members and members of any reserve component from employer discrimination.

The bill passed the Senate 47-0 and moves back to the House of Representatives for further consideration.

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