Businesses do not have a license to discriminate: Victory in Wildflower Inn Case

Earlier today, the ACLU and the ACLU of Vermont announced a fantastic settlement that we obtained in Baker & Linsley v. Wildflower Inn. We brought the case on behalf of a same-sex couple who were told they could not have their wedding reception at a Vermont resort called Wildflower Inn because of the owner’s personal religious beliefs about marriage. As part of the settlement agreement, Wildflower Inn agreed that Vermont’s public accommodations law prohibits unequal treatment of same-sex couples, which includes turning away same-sex couples seeking to have a wedding reception, failing to respond to inquiries from those couples, or discouraging those couples from using the facilities. The resort also agreed to pay $10,000 to the Vermont Human Rights Commission as a civil penalty and to place $20,000 in a charitable trust to be disbursed by the couple. The plaintiffs, Kate Linsley (nee Baker) and Ming Linsley, will not be retaining any of the money for themselves.

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