Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Washington State AG Sues Florist Who Refused To Sell Flowers For Gay Wedding

Washington state attorney general Bob Ferguson announced yesterday that his office has filed a consumer protection lawsuit against a retail florist for refusing to sell flowers to a customer who wanted to purchase them for his wedding.  The complaint (full text) in  State of Washington v. Arlene's Flowers, Inc.,(Super Ct., filed 4/9/2013), alleges that the flower shop owner, Barronelle Stutzman, told customer Robert Ingersoll that she could not provide the flowers for his same-sex wedding "because of [her] relationship with Jesus Christ." The complaint alleges further that the sexual orientation discrimination involved here is a violation of the public accommodate provisions of Washington's Law Against Discrimination and thus a per se violation of the state's Consumer Protection Act. AP reports on the lawsuit.