NI Bakery Could Face Legal Action Over Refusal To Bake Cake Supporting Gay Marriage
A bakery in Northern Ireland could face legal action after it refused a request to make a cake with a message supporting gay marriage, according to reports today.
Ashers Baking Company allegedly refused an order, which included the message “support gay marriage” along with a picture of Sesame Street characters Bert and Ernie, because it went against the religious beliefs of the Christian owners.
The general manager of the company, Daniel McArthur, explained in a statement: “The directors and myself looked at it and considered it and thought that this order was at odds with our beliefs. The following Monday we rang up the customer to let him know we couldn't take his order”.
But now the bakery has received a letter from the Equality Commission which has reportedly threatened legal action and said that the refusal to print the cake amounts to discrimination.
The Christian Institute has expressed support for the bakery because “the case proves the need for the law to reasonably accommodate family-run businesses with firmly held beliefs”.
The organisation added: “When the order came through to the head office, the manager and directors decided to decline the request on conscience grounds, and offered a full refund”.