On the last day of Pride Month the Supreme Court issued its ruling on 303 Creative. This decision, which is out of step with the values of the majority of Americans, will allow some businesses to discriminate against people simply because of who they are.
While we are deeply disappointed in the Court’s decision and its implications for our LGBTQ+ communities, the impact of this ruling is limited. The scope of this ruling is around “expressive services,” which represents only a narrow category of business offerings. This is not a broad license to discriminate. If anything, the most immediate impact of this decision will be years of further litigation to spell out exactly how this decision will impact the real world.
Bottom Line: Civil rights protections remain strong and will continue to be an important tool to protect members of the LGBTQ+ community here in Minnesota and beyond.
However, we know that this will be deeply felt by so many in our communities—especially at a time when LGBTQ+ rights have relentlessly been under attack across the country. Our communities are feeling vulnerable, and today’s ruling only further heightens those concerns.
We must remain vigilant and dedicated to the work of equity. We cannot count on the courts alone to safeguard our rights and address inequities. We all have a responsibility to be a part of building a better world. Here in our state, OutFront Minnesota will continue to advance good policy and work within our communities to support a more welcoming and inclusive state.
We are not powerless at this moment.
We urge Minnesotans to stand with LGBTQ+ community members across this state and affirm our values of inclusion and welcome. And in particular, we call on the business community to speak up in support of LGBTQ+ inclusion. It’s the right thing to do, and it’s good for business.
As Justice Sonia Sotomayor says so eloquently in her dissent:
"The meaning of our Constitution is found not in any law volume, but in the spirit of the people who live under it. Every business owner in America has a choice whether to live out the values in the Constitution."
Here at OutFront Minnesota we recommit ourselves to the work ahead for our LGBTQ+ communities. Throughout Pride Month, we have seen the ways in which our communities have powerfully and joyfully gathered to find connection and draw on our rich history of activism. We draw on that history and will continue to work for a world where all members of our communities are free to lead lives of opportunity, autonomy, and full self-expression.