Court rules against print shop called ‘Rainbow Colour’ that refused to print posters for LGBT+ activists
A printing shop called Rainbow Colour that ironically refused to serve an LGBT+ group has been ordered to pay compensation.
An Israeli court ordered the shop to pay 50,000 NIS (£11,400) and legal expenses over its refusal to print posters for an LGBT+ group at Ben Gurion University.
According to The Times of Israel, when the group had enquired about the cost of poster printing, the business responded: “We do not deal with abomination materials. We are Jews!”
A lawsuit was brought by the Aguda Association for LGBTQ Equality in Israel, arguing that the shop had violated Israel’s LGBT+ non-discrimination laws, which have been in force since 2000.
The shop argued that they cannot serve people who are deemed to be in violation of religious law.
However, in his ruling on the issue, Judge Orit Lipshitz concluded: “When their beliefs conflict with a necessity of providing service to all in a public space, the [latter must take precedent].”
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Aguda CEO Ohad Hizki said: “It is unacceptable for a business that provides a public service to decide to discriminate against an entire population of Israeli society simply because of their sexual orientation or gender identity.
“To this day, thousands of companies and community members suffer discrimination, hatred and violence just because of who they are.
“We applaud this clear and just ruling that prohibits unfair discrimination and [will] continue to fight for anyone and everyone to receive full equality of rights.”
The ruling has attracted attacks from conservatives including far-right transport minister Bezalel Smotrich, a self-described “proud homophobe” who once organised a “beast parade” to protest a Pride event.
Smotrich, who is also a supporter of racial segregation, told The Times of Israel that the ruling is forcing the business owner “to act against his belief at his private business”.
The minister disgraced himself in 2015 after an ultra-Orthodox Jewish man went on a stabbing rampage during Jerusalem’s Pride parade.
Smotrich responded by attacking the “abomination parade” and claiming that gay people control the media, saying: “Among those who hold the microphone and determine for all of us what we should think and what we should say, a very large number are [gay].”