Queer woman kicked out of For The Love music festival ‘for kissing a woman’
Security at Australia’s For The Love music festival in Perth allegedly booted a woman from their event because she was kissing her female friend.
Asha Couch, who identifies as queer, was told that she and her friend had to leave because they were “too intoxicated” – despite neither of them having a drink at the time.
The incident occurred on February 29, but For the Love did not respond to her messages until she went public with her complaint, calling for the festival to “live up to” its name.
Posting on Facebook, Couch wrote: “Around 8pm, I was sitting on the grass with another girl and we were kissing and talking. We were not bothering anybody nearby; we were not being loud or disruptive or offensive in any way whatsoever. We didn’t even have drinks with us at the time.
“A member of security approached us and told us that we were being kicked out of the festival. I asked what we had done wrong, and was simply told that we were too intoxicated and needed to go.
“Neither I nor my friend were being anything but respectful to the people around us. We were not too drunk or causing any problems – we were just kissing.
“It doesn’t take a genius to figure out what the security guard really took offence to – I had seen countless heterosexual couples, far drunker than us, all up in each others’ faces all day with no complaint from security.”
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The women had been excited for the event for more than a month and spent over $200 between them, but were kicked out before they could see the two biggest acts of the night. “To say I am disappointed is an understatement,” Crouch said.
“This was the first time I’ve been made to feel small and unwelcome due to my sexuality. I never want to feel this way again but, unfortunately, we’ve still got a long way to come with LGBTQ+ discrimination.”
As her post began to gain traction on social media, For The Love organisers finally responded, claiming they were unable to answer her post more promptly.
They strongly denied that their whole security team was homophobic, a claim Couch does not appear to have made in her complaint or in her Facebook post.
“We’re looking into the issue with security but saying the whole tour security team are homophobic is not accurate unfortunately. Nor saying that we ignored the issue,” a spokesperson wrote.
“We simply haven’t had the capability to get back to all enquires in the last few days but now we that we have, we are working through it with Asha.”
In response to an angry commenter, they added: “FYI we are completely supportive of the LGBT+ community, in fact some of our entertainment actually featured them.”