FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: June 04, 2018
PRESS RELEASE — June 04, 2018
Masterpiece Cakes SCOTUS Decision Ruling Press Release
[Minneapolis, MN] Today the Supreme Court issued a narrow ruling in the Masterpiece Cakeshop case where they sided with the baker who discriminated against a same-sex couple. However, the ruling pertained to the specifics of this case and did not undermine our nation’s core principle that businesses open to the public should be open to all and fundamental principles of nondiscrimination. In fact, it reaffirmed the importance of state laws protecting lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer (LGBTQ) people from discrimination. The Court’s decision is limited specifically to this one case and calls into question actions from the Colorado Civil Rights Commission – but it leaves intact Colorado’s LGBTQ-inclusive nondiscrimination protections, as well as similar protections in 19 states and 200+ cities and towns, including here in Minnesota.
In 1993, OutFront Minnesota advocated successfully for legal protections in housing, employment, education and public accommodations for LGBTQ Minnesotans. The Minnesota Human Rights Act became the first state law in the country to include legal protections for trans people. Currently, 60% of the states in the US and the federal government do not have nondiscrimination laws for LGBTQ people. OutFront was founded in 1987 with the belief that LGBTQ people should be granted the same rights and dignity as everyone else by virtue of our humanity. That belief has not changed and we are committed to ensuring LGBTQ people are treated fairly and justly.
Our nation decided more than 50 years ago that when a business decides to open its doors to the public, that business should be open to all. That principle reflects the core American value of treating others as we wish to be treated. No one - including LGBTQ people - should be refused service just because of who they are. “Today’s case was never just about cake. This case called into question whether LGBTQ people should be treated with dignity and respect or if businesses could discriminate against someone simply because of who they are or who they love. The Supreme Court upheld that businesses should be open to all and that states can enact protections that cover LGBTQ people.” said Monica Meyer, OutFront Minnesota’s Executive Director.
OutFront Minnesota calls on Minnesota’s congressional delegation to work with federal lawmakers to pass the Equality Act to ensure that all people in the United States have the same legal protections as LGBTQ Minnesotans. Reverend DeWayne Davis, pastor of All God’s Children Metropolitan Community Church, echoes this call saying, “I am proud that Minnesota decided LGBTQ Minnesotans deserved equal protection under the law decades ago. Now, it is time for our elected officials in Congress to affirm the same values of nondiscrimination Minnesotans have — and values that most Americans already support. It is time to pass the Equality Act to ensure that all Americans are protected in our jobs, homes, and communities.”
OutFront Minnesota’s mission is to create a state where lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer people are free to be who they are, love who they love, and live without fear of violence, harassment or discrimination. For more than 30 years we have led the way toward LGBTQ equity.