Update on Appeal to SCOTUS

Here is a statement from Joshua Hershberger, IFI’s General Counsel:

Though SCOTUS denied the Petition of Mary and Jeremy Cox yesterday, we did accomplish the goal of placing this fact pattern in front of SCOTUS as a real and growing threat to parental rights, freedom of religion, and free speech. These constitutional principles represent a cause–not just a case–and we will continue to advocate for that cause in law and culture. Full statements below:

Mary and Jeremy Cox:

“No other loving parents should have to endure what we did. The pain of having our son taken from our home and kept from our care because of our beliefs will stay with us forever. We can’t change the past, but we will continue to fight for a future where parents of faith can raise their children without fear of state officials knocking on their doors and taking their children.”

Lori Windham, Vice President and Senior Counsel at Becket, and Joshua Hershberger:

“What Indiana officials did to Mary and Jeremy was a shocking attack on parental rights. Loving parents should not lose custody of their children because they disagree with the state about gender. We are confident that the Supreme Court will ultimately protect this basic right and ensure that parents can raise their children consistent with their religious beliefs.”

The fight for parental rights is far from over in Indiana.



IFI’s Legislative Session Update

The 2024 “short” legislative session, which ended this past Friday, was a busy one. Our legislative team was at the Statehouse daily tracking bills, testifying in committees, pushing legislation, organizing meetings, and more.  Thank you for your support and engagement! We pulled out all the stops for you to advance Hoosier values forward. In particular, we want to highlight the two great bills below that PASSED and are currently awaiting the governor’s signature.
SB 17: Age Verification for Adult Websites An area that public policy has not caught up with technology is protecting children from hardcore pornographic websites. Today, a child can easily access the most hardcore pornography online and the companies that own these websites are not held accountable. SB 17 would subject these companies to fines and legal action if they do not have a method for denying minors access to their site.

HB 1137: Religious Release Time Instruction for Public Schools  HB 1137, introduced by Rep. Kendell Culp, is a promising bill that would require principals at public schools to allow students to attend religious classes during the school day, provided the classes are off school property, privately funded, and parent-permitted. This concept is protected by a 1952 U.S. Supreme Court ruling but was never brought to fruition in Indiana law. We believe HB 1137 would revolutionize Indiana schools for the better and positively impact countless lives. Again, we thank you for your prayers and activism during the legislative session! Our staff continues to tirelessly work behind the scenes to defend the rights and values of Hoosier citizens. Your support strengthens Indiana families!