Following the ruling of the Court of Appeal in Belfast last month, Christian baking company owners the McArthurs might be appealed in the UK’s highest court
Lord Chief Justice Declan Morgan told those representing the McArthurs who own Ashers bakery: “You need to make a decision whether you wish to pursue it.”
A section of the Northern Ireland Act 1998 might provide a means for them to bring their case to the Supreme Court.
Yesterday the case returned to the Court of Appeal in Belfast after Attorney General John Larkin QC made known his intention to defer the ‘gay cake’ case to the Supreme Court in London.
Proceedings were adjourned so that the McArthurs legal team could decide on the possibility of appealing under schedule 12 of the aforementioned Northern Ireland Act.
Last week the McArthurs were away on holidays last week following their appeal, a member of the Christian Institute revealed.
Christian Institute Backing
Backed financially by the Christian Institute in their legal case, the McArthurs have incurred legal fees of £200,000 to date in their initial court case and subsequent appeal.
If Ashers bakery do take the case to the Supreme Court or the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR), the Christian Institute intends to continue to support them financially.
Simon Calvert, deputy director of public affairs for the Christian Institute, told the BBC that the “law could have better accommodated” the McArthurs’ bakery in this case.
The Christian Institute member attempted to differentiate between disagreeing with a political idea and being forced to propagate it and disagreeing with LGBT people’s sexual orientation and refusing to serve them based solely on that.
“It’s not about turning away customers because of something to do with their nature the customer himself or herself. It’s to do with whether you can forced by the law to help promote a cause with which you fundamentally disagree,” Calvert said.
What do you think? Do the McArthurs have a case to make with civil liberties like freedom of religion at stake? Or are the anti-discrimination laws that are in place going to mean their appeal once again be unsuccessful?
Let us know in the comments below.