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Judgment reserved in Ashers case

On 12th May 2016, the three appeal judges, Lord Chief Justice Sir Declan Morgan and Lord Justices Weatherup and Weir confirmed that they were reserving their judgment in the case of Lee v McArthur, better known as the Ashers case.

Ashers Baking Company run by the McArthurs sought to overturn a finding that it acted unlawfully in refusing to bake a cake for a customer depicting Sesame Street characters Bert and Ernie below the slogan ‘Support Gay Marriage.’  The cake was for an event to mark International Day Against Homophobia.  The bakery refunded the money for the order on the basis that the message was against their Christian faith. 

The customer sued and Belfast County Court held that the bakery had discriminated against him on grounds of sexual orientation and religious belief or political opinion.  They were ordered to pay £500 compensation.  Counsel for the cake company stated that, ‘the reason the order was declined was conscience, it was nothing to do with this customer or any customer’s political opinion.’

The appeal judges have pledged to give their verdict as soon as possible.

Read news article here.

Discrimination, LGBT