A printing company in Drogheda, Ireland, refused to print the invitations for a gay couple’s civil partnership ceremony because the owners “don’t agree with homosexuality”.
Several businesses in Ireland, North and South, have now appeared in the media quoting their religious intolerance of homosexuality as justification for refusal of service.
Last year action was taken against Ashers Bakery, which is facing legal action after declining to bake a cake celebrating gay marriage. The current case also mirrors a case taken against a Portadown businessman 18 months ago for refusing to print an edition of MyGayZine Magazine.
Mr Brennan (29) will enter a civil partnership with his partner of eight years, John Kierans, in August. He said he had been a customer of the printing company for four years before it refused to accept his order.
John Kierans and Jonathon Brennan said the firm’s co-owner, Noel Tuite, initially agreed to print the invitations. However the following day they were informed that the order would be declined because the co-owners, Mr Tuite and Mike O’Leary, were “Bible-believing Christians”.
The couple were left “infuriated and shocked”.
Speaking to the Niall Boylan show on Classic Hits 4FM, Brennan said the company owner told him: “We don’t agree with gay marriage and we don’t believe in homosexuality. There is a conflict of interest this time and we have to refuse.”
In response to the news the printing company has attracted harsh criticism on their Facebook page – ( https://www.facebook.com/BeulahPrint ) – but continues to defend their decision in posts quoting snippets of biblical text and personal opinion.
Tiernan Brady from the Dublin-based Gay and Lesbian Equality Network (GLEN) said it was against the Republic’s law to deny goods or services to people based on sexual orientation. “That’s a good law and it’s there for a reason, as it protects people,” he said.
Ireland is due to vote on the legalisation of same-sex marriage in the referendum on May 22.