Bakery Pays $135K for Refusing to Make Cake for Gay Wedding
The owners of the now-closed Sweet Cakes bakery in Gresham, Oregon, have paid out more than $135,000 in damages for refusing to bake a cake for a lesbian wedding.
Klein turned in a check for $136,927.07, which included interest on the July 2015 state-ordered judgment, to the Oregon Bureau of Labor and Industries in Portland after violating the Laurel and Rachel Bowman-Cryer's civil rights, according to OregonLive.com.
“My clients are happy the Kleins paid the fine and are moving forward,” lawyer Paul Thompson told the Oregon paper. “I hope to see the ruling upheld on appeal.”
The incident took place back in 2013, when Laurel Bowman-Cryer went to the bakery for a wedding cake tasting. She was told the bakery could not make the cake for religious reasons. Bowman-Cryer filed a complaint with the state of Oregon and the labor commissioner awarded the damages, claiming it was a violation of state law to discriminate based on sexual orientation.
The Kleins, who own the bakery, refused to pay the fine on account of financial hardship and appealed the decision.
Tyler Smith, the attorney who represents the Kleins, said the couple has not given up on the appeals process but believes it is in the Kleins' best interest to pay the fine now.
A 2007 Oregon law protects the rights of gays, lesbians, bisexual and trans-gendered people regarding employment, housing and public accommodations. The state also ruled that private businesses cannot discriminate against potential customers.