Amicus Brief Filed by Kaplan Hecker & Fink Cited in Washington v. Arlene’s Flowers

By: 
Kaplan Hecker & Fink LLP
Published on:
June 11th, 2019
Photo: AMERICAN CIVIL LIBERTIES UNION OF WASHINGTON

On Thursday, June 6, 2019, the Washington State Supreme Court held in Washington v. Arlene’s Flowers (Wash. No. 91615-2) that the Washington courts did not act with religious animus when they ruled that Appellant Baronelle Stutzman violated Washington’s public accommodations laws by declining to sell wedding flowers to a same-sex couple.  In so ruling, the Washington State Supreme Court cited an amicus brief that Kaplan Hecker & Fink filed on behalf of a group of leading church-state scholars (see our prior post here).

In that brief, we explained that Stutzman was afforded the “neutral and respectful consideration” of her religious objections required by the United States Supreme Court’s decision in Masterpiece Cakeshop, Ltd. v. Colorado Civil Rights Commission, 138 S. Ct. 1719 (2018), and we noted “Masterpiece’s clear sensitivity to the institutional context in which the government allegedly engaged in religious targeting”—a passage quoted approvingly by the Washington State Supreme Court at page 24 of its opinion.

Read the Washington State Supreme Court's decision here, and our amicus brief here.