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Published On: Sat, Apr 13th, 2013

Washington State suing florist for refusing to provide flowers for gay wedding

One small flower shop is in a battle with the State of Washington for freedom of religion and freedom of conscience. The lawsuit resulted from the refusal to supply flowers to a gay wedding due to her Christian beliefs.

"Lesbian" wedding mock-cake at the Roma Gay Pride in 2008. Picture by Stefano Bolognini via wikimedia commons.

“Lesbian” wedding mock-cake at the Roma Gay Pride in 2008. Picture by Stefano Bolognini via wikimedia commons.

“If a business provides a product or service to opposite-sex couples for their weddings, then it must provide same-sex couples the same product or service,” Attorney General Bob Ferguson said in a statement.

The owner, Barronelle Stutzman, confirms that her shop (Arlene’s Flowers in Richland, Washington) is now facing thousands in fines and penalties for violating the act.

On March 1, a longtime customer asked Stutzman to provide flowers for his upcoming same-sex wedding. According to court documents, she told him that she would not be able to do so “because of her relationship with Jesus Christ.”

The Attorney General’s office sent a letter to the florist on March 28 giving her a chance to reconsider her position and sign an agreement indicating her intention to comply with the law.

But Stutzman refused.

“Under the Consumer Protection Act, it is unlawful to discriminate against customers on the basis of sexual orientation,” the attorney general said.

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  1. Brandon Jones says:

    Florist now facing second lawsuit by ACLU

  2. Washington State suing florist for refusing to provide flowers for gay wedding | Flowers only says:

    […] Washington State suing florist for refusing to provide flowers for gay wedding The Attorney General's office sent a letter to the florist on March 28 giving her a chance to reconsider her position and sign an agreement indicating her intention to comply with the law. But Stutzman refused. “Under the Consumer Protection Act, it is … Read more on The Global Dispatch […]

  3. Christina says:

    The problem is, if the law or act is already in place, business owners are bound to it.

    Now, if the law wasn’t in place, that owner can refuse service to anyone. At that point, you simply move on to someone who will, and believe me…someone will….”

    “Under the Consumer Protection Act, it is unlawful to discriminate against customers on the basis of sexual orientation,””

  4. Todd says:

    Wow!!

    Regardless of how one feels about gay marriage the state has no right to force a business owner into doing something against what they believe but you see how the govt has people swayed. The focus is on the florist not govt interference

  5. Ken says:

    Thats funny, I’m a Christian and I support marriage equality

    • Ken says:

      That is funny ken. Animals have rights too you know, so maybe you support the right of a dog and man (or woman) to marry. I’m sure your “brand” of Christianity would also support that. I would refuse sodomites just as the florist did, as I would also turn away a man marrying his donkey. I’m not denying them “marriage”, just refusing to participate in it.

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