Transgender Woman Denied Business Cards, Owner Cites Christian Beliefs
The conflict between religious freedom and LGBT rights has shifted to the United Kingdom when a Christian printer refused to print business cards for a transgender woman.
Nigel Williams had met Joanne Lockwood at a networking event. Several weeks later she requested that he make business cards for her company SEE Change Happen, that provides consultation for companies on LGBT sensitivity training and compiling with legal obligations.
Mr. Williams not only refused to make the cards but wrote a letter to Mrs. Lockwood explaining his decision. He explained that he believed that “The new model of diversity is used (or misused) to marginalize (or indeed discriminate against) Christians in their workplaces.”
Ms. Lockwood was extremely upset, telling reporters that the letter added insult to injury. She added that she was a victim of discrimination. Mr. Williams has received support from the Christian Institute, a conservative group. In an official statement they released, they said: “It is a fundamental tenet of free speech and freedom of belief that people should not be forced to help promote causes flatly contrary to their own deeply held views.”
The Christian Institute supported another popular case where a Northern Ireland baker refused to make a same-sex marriage cake in October 2016. The subsequent court case and appeal found that it was a form of discrimination.
It is unclear whether Ms. Lockwood is going to pursue legal action against Mr. Williams.