Measure moves forward in push to allow businesses to turn away same-sex couples

05/09/2014 // West Palm Beach, Florida, US // JusticeNewsFlash // Justice News Flash // (press release)

Portland, Oregon – A ballot measure aimed at allowing businesses to turn away same-sex couples seeking services for their weddings is moving forward in Oregon. As reported by the Associated Press (AP), the Protect Religious Freedom Initiative is seeking an exemption to the state’s anti-discrimination law, which is the first driven by voters to specifically target businesses in the country.

The final ballot language for the initiative was approved by the Oregon Supreme Court on Thursday.

Shawn Lindsay, general counsel for Friends of Religious Freedom, which sponsored the measure, is quoted by the AP as stating, “A Jewish pianist or a Christian violinist who may not want to participate in a same sex ceremony based on deeply held religious beliefs are currently subject to government penalties and civil actions.”

Similar measures introduced by legislatures in multiple states so far have failed to become law.

Eunice Rho of the American Civil Liberties Union is quoted as stating of the matter, “I think this is a movement that has been building over time…The religious freedom talking point is a red herring. There’s no doubt that they are seeking to use religion to discriminate.”

This report is provided by Justice News Flash – Oregon Legal News

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