Sending Office: Honorable Sean Patrick Maloney
Sent By:

SIGN ON:  Amici Brief Supporting Public Accommodation Protections for LGBTQ Community

Signers:  Earl Blumenauer, Julia Brownley, Kathy Castor, Joe Crowley, Adriano Espaillat, Pramila Jayapal, Alan Lowenthal, Seth Moulton, Eleanor Holmes Norton, Frank Pallone, Mark Pocan, Mike Quigley, Carol Shea-Porter, Jackie Speier, Mark
Takano, Debbie Wasserman Schultz

Supporting:  American Civil Liberties Union, NAACP Legal Defense Fund, Human Rights Campaign, National Center for Transgender Equality, Lambda Legal

Sign On Deadline:  Friday, 10/20, COB

Dear Colleague,

Senator Tammy Baldwin and I invite you to join us in filing an amici brief in the U.S. Supreme Court case
Masterpiece Cakeshop v. Colorado Civil Rights Commission (Docket 16-111), a case which may decide whether public accommodations can discriminate against members of the LGBTQ community and other historically marginalized groups.

Masterpiece Cakeshop is ostensibly about whether a bakery can refuse to create a wedding cake for a same sex couple.  But its potential impact goes far beyond baking cakes.  If the court finds that a business owner’s religious conviction or expressive
intent trumps civil rights laws, any business could be able to turn away customers for any number of unlawfully discriminatory reasons:  A hotel owner could refuse to house a single mother, an architect could refuse to build disability accommodations into
their designs, or a restaurant could refuse to serve an interracial couple.

In the words of the U.S. Supreme Court in Rousseve v. Shape Spa for Health & Beauty, public accommodation nondiscrimination laws seek to remove “the daily affront and humiliation involved in discriminatory denials of access to facilities ostensibly
open to the general public.”  We need a strong congressional statement that the court must maintain the integrity of our civil rights laws and not undermine the myriad federal and state laws that provide all Americans will equal access to the public market.

Our amici brief will consider the history of federal nondiscrimination laws, like Title II of the Civil Rights Act and Title III of the ADA, and analyze the goal of these laws to abolish the very discrimination that Masterpiece Cakeshop seeks to legalize
here: discrimination by public accommodations seeking to serve only customers of certain demographics. Our brief will then argue that these nondiscrimination laws are still necessary and creating the exemptions Masterpiece Cakeshop seeks would undermine the
government’s critical interest in prohibiting discrimination.

If you would like to sign on, please email LGBT Equality Caucus Executive Director Roddy Flynn at

Sean Patrick Maloney (NY-18)
Member of Congress

Related Legislative Issues

Selected legislative information: Civil Rights, Consumer Affairs, Family Issues, Judiciary, Labor

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