Another prominent Indiana employer has joined a coalition opposing a potential amendment to the state constitution that would ban same-sex marriage. Indianapolis-based Emmis Communications Inc. (Nasdaq: EMMS) is now part of Freedom Indiana. Emmis Chief Executive Officer Jeff Smulyan believes the language in the proposed amendment is “overreaching and unnecessary.” Other employers who are part of the Freedom Indiana effort include Columbus-based Cummins Inc. (NYSE: CMI) and Eli Lilly and Co. (NYSE: LLY) in Indianapolis.
November 6, 2013
INDIANAPOLIS — Emmis Communications (Nasdaq: EMMS) today announced it has joined Freedom Indiana, the bipartisan grassroots coalition opposing Indiana’s House Joint Resolution 6 (HJR-6), which would permanently alter the Indiana Constitution to define marriage and would remove existing protections under law for same-sex and unmarried couples.
Emmis Communications Chairman and CEO Jeff Smulyan said he believes the proposed language of HJR-6 is overreaching and unnecessary and that the amendment is detrimental to existing and potential Indiana businesses by hindering recruitment and retention of talented employees.
“Indiana has traditionally had a friendly business environment that is the backbone of the Hoosier economy,” Smulyan said. “This is two steps backward and runs counter to what businesses are demanding. Regardless of age, gender or sexual orientation, Indiana needs to send a positive, welcoming message. We will oppose this kind of exclusionary approach any time, in any form it appears.”
Freedom Indiana is a statewide organization that includes parents, lawmakers, advocates for liberty, faith leaders, educators, academic institutions and some of Indiana's largest employers who believe that the Indiana Constitution should protect all Hoosiers and our state should be viewed as a welcome place for all who choose to call it home.
Freedom Indiana campaign manager Megan Robertson welcomed Emmis to the growing coalition.
“In a little more than two months, we've built a statewide organization that includes thousands of grassroots supporters alongside some of our state's largest businesses and academic institutions,” Robertson said. “Hoosiers don't want this amendment written into our Constitution, and they're showing that opposition with support for Freedom Indiana.”
Freedom Indiana launched with the support of Cummins and Eli Lilly and Company and recently added the Indy Chamber, Indiana University, DePauw University and Wabash College as campaign partners.
In the 2014 legislative session, Indiana lawmakers can choose either to table or vote down the amendment or send it to voters for a statewide referendum next November. If it does not pass or is not called for action, the Indiana Constitution will be protected, and marriage will still be defined as between one man and one woman under Indiana law.
About Emmis Communications
Emmis Communications – Great Media, Great People, Great Service®
Emmis Communications Corporation is a diversified media company, principally focused on radio broadcasting. Emmis operates the 10th largest publicly traded radio portfolio in the United States based on total listeners. Emmis owns 18 FM and 3 AM radio stations in New York, Los Angeles, St. Louis, Austin (Emmis has a 50.1% controlling interest in Emmis’ radio stations located there), Indianapolis and Terre Haute, IN. One of our FM radio stations in New York is operated pursuant to a Local Marketing Agreement (“LMA”) whereby a third party provides the programming for the station and sells all advertising within that programming.
About Freedom Indiana
Freedom Indiana is a bipartisan statewide organization that champions liberty for all Hoosiers. It was formed in August 2013 to oppose an amendment to the Indiana Constitution that would permanently alter the state’s definition of marriage and potentially affect hundreds of protections related to marriage under current Indiana law. More information: www.freedomindiana.orgSource: Freedom Indiana