Hangley Aronchick Segal Pudlin & Schiller shareholder Mark Aronchick was quoted in the Pennsylvania Capital-Star about the recent SCOTUS ruling favoring freedom of expression over a state law prohibiting discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity. The ruling, which says that a graphic designer could refuse to make websites for same-sex weddings without facing sanctions under Colorado’s anti-discrimination law, has spurred advocates to intensify efforts to pass anti-discrimination protections for LGBTQ+ individuals in Pennsylvania.

While the ruling focuses on First Amendment rights for business owners and is unlikely to have immediate wide-ranging efforts on existing or future anti-discrimination laws, Mark and other legal experts suggest it may lead to more challenges to such laws. Mark notes that the 303 Creative ruling should serve as a wake-up call for human relations lawyers and commissioners around the country. He specifically notes that Colorado’s agency responsible for enforcing the state’s anti-discrimination law did not vigorously litigate the graphic designer’s claim underlying the Supreme Court decision, and the decision makes it possible for businesses that want to discriminate against protected individuals to claim they cannot be forced to product something that is not within their creative sensibilities.

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