INDIANAPOLIS— Today, the Senate heard the State Budget on second reading. Senator J.D. Ford (D-Indianapolis) offered several amendments, including one to fund the rape kit backlog to help more sexual assault survivors get justice and one to give a $750,000 annual appropriation to Indiana Task Force 1, a group that responds to natural disasters across the state and country. Senator Ford offered the following statement:

“I’m disappointed that the Senate couldn’t support these two small, common sense amendments that support sexual assault victims and our first responders. Our neighboring states have been able to eliminate their rape kit backlogs because they prioritize doing so. Meanwhile, Indiana continues to ignore our growing backlog. I’m also disappointed that despite our recent natural disasters across the state, we still can’t spare $750,000 to enhance our ability to respond to future disasters. Budgets are about priorities and values, these two common sense issues deserve to be included in our budget, not voted down with no discussion.”