A top Christian dating site has been ordered in a settlement that it must stop banning same-sex matches.
ChristianMingle.com was ordered in a “judge-approved settlement of discrimination claims” to allow same-sex matches, reports the Wall Street Journal.
The terms of the settlement in the California-filed lawsuit dictate that the site’s operator, Spark Networks Inc, must now same-sex couples to use the site to find matches.
They were sued in 2013 by two gay men who said the site’s refusal to allow LGB people to find matches was unconstitutional.
As agreed in the settlement, the site will only ask if users are men or women – it also has to provide measures to help gay, lesbian and bisexual people to find matches on the site.
The settlement applies to ChristianMingle.com as well as sister sites CatholicMingle.com, AdventistSinglesConnection.com and BlackSingles.com.
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The plaintiffs’ lawyer Vineet Dubey on Friday said:
“I am gratified that we were able to work with Spark to help ensure that people can fully participate in all the diverse market places that make our country so special, regardless of their sexual orientation.”
ChristianMingle.com’s Facebook page included an article on Friday titled “Why a Test of Faith is Something to Be Thankful For.”
It reads: “Trials are never fun, but it’s helpful to know that God is working through them. One of the ways he is working is to assure his children of the true faith he has planted in their hearts. And so we can say with James, “Thank you, Lord, for your blessings and for your trials.”
Back in 2013, the founder and CEO of dating website eHarmony, who previously said that his site didn’t cater to gay people because they couldn’t get married, said that the recognition of same-sex marriages and civil unions in the US had “damaged” his business.
The company, eHarmony was founded in 2000 on the premise that by matching people with compatible personality traits the site could provide people with matches they could successfully marry.
Earlier this year, a new dating site has launched – that only caters for people who are straight and white.