Indiana news

2013-03-24T00:00:00Z Indiana newsThe Associated Press The Associated Press
March 24, 2013 12:00 am  • 

Saplings from Anne Frank's tree to take root in Indianapolis

INDIANAPOLIS | Saplings from the chestnut tree that stood as a symbol of hope for Anne Frank as she hid from the Nazis for two years in Amsterdam are being distributed to 11 locations in the United States as part of a project that aims to preserve her legacy and promote tolerance.

The tree, one of the Jewish teenager's only connections to nature while she hid with her family, was diseased and rotted through the trunk when wind and heavy rain toppled it in August 2010. But saplings grown from its seeds will be planted starting in April, when the Children's Museum of Indianapolis will put the first one in the ground.

The 11 U.S. locations, which also include a park memorializing 9-11 victims in New York City, an Arkansas high school that was the heart of the desegregation battle and Holocaust centers in Michigan and Washington state were chosen by The Anne Frank Center USA from 34 applicants.

The tree is referenced several times in the diary that Anne Frank kept during the 25 months she remained indoors until her family was arrested in August 1944.

Indiana labor union membership at lowest level in 24 years

TERRE HAUTE | An aging workforce, shifting political winds and changes in the public sector have driven Indiana's union membership to its lowest recorded levels. But union leaders and experts say organized labor isn't dead yet.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics shows union members made up 9.1 percent of Indiana's workforce in 2012, down from 22 percent in 1983. It's the first time since the government started tracking individual state data in 1989 that Indiana's union workforce has fallen below 10 percent, the Tribune-Star reported.

Experts say former Gov. Mitch Daniels' decision in 2005 to end collective bargaining for state workers contributed to the drop but that the effects of Indiana's new right-to-work law, which bars companies from requiring union membership, haven't been fully felt yet.

Group seeks changes in Purdue University discipline policies

WEST LAFAYETTE | A group representing Purdue University faculty says it is encouraged by discussions with President Mitch Daniels about how the university handles disciplinary cases but says changes in policy are needed to ensure professors accused of wrongdoing get fair hearings.

The American Association of University Professors has sent a string of letters in the past year criticizing the university's due process and asking Daniels to institute changes to policies they say often make administrators judge and jury.

Purdue administrators have rejected the accusations of bad policy by the AAUP, a national group representing faculty. Provost Tim Sands said policies on tenure, sanctions and academic freedoms have been in place since 1977 and have been upheld in federal district court.

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