Ingersoll v. Arlene’s Flowers, State of Washington v. Arlene’s Flowers, and Arlene’s Flowers v. Ferguson

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Thursday, December 18, 2014

Description:  Barronelle Stutzman, the sole owner of Arlene’s Flowers in Richland, Wash., has for her entire career served and employed people who identify as homosexual. Despite this, the American Civil Liberties Union and the Washington attorney general allege that she is guilty of unlawful discrimination because she acted consistent with her faith and declined to use her creative skills to beautify the same-sex ceremony of a long-time customer, Robert Ingersoll, and another man, Curt Freed.


Wash. grandmother’s religious freedom, livelihood at stake

ADF attorneys available for media interviews following hearing Friday
Thursday, December 18, 2014

Attorney sound bites:  Kristen Waggoner  |  Jonathan Scruggs

 
 
WHO: ADF Senior Counsel Kristen Waggoner, ADF Legal Counsel Jonathan Scruggs
WHAT: Available for media interviews following hearing in State of Washington v. Arlene’s Flowers
WHEN: Friday, Dec. 19, immediately after hearing, which begins at 1:30 p.m. PST
WHERE: Benton County Superior Court, Bldg. A, 7122 W. Okanogan Pl., Kennewick

KENNEWICK, Wash. – Alliance Defending Freedom attorneys will be available for media interviews following a hearing Friday in state court in the case of a florist being sued for acting consistently with her faith. Barronelle Stutzman, owner of Arlene’s Flowers, declined to use her creative skills to participate in and design custom floral arrangements for a long-time customer’s same-sex ceremony. Stutzman instead referred the customer to one of a large number of other florists in the area who were willing to fill his order.

ADF recently asked the court to dismiss the unprecedented claims filed against Stutzman in her personal capacity since the state is already pursuing claims against her business. The hearing Friday concerns summary judgment motions related to the primary issues in the case.

“Americans oppose unjust laws that strong-arm citizens to express ideas against their will,” said ADF Senior Counsel Kristen Waggoner. “Barronelle and numerous others like her around the country have been more than willing to serve any and all customers, but they are not willing to promote any and all messages. A government that forces any American to create a message contrary to her own convictions and surrender her livelihood is a government every American should fear.”

“In America, the government is supposed to protect freedom, not use intolerance for certain viewpoints to intimidate citizens into acting contrary to their faith,” added ADF Legal Counsel Jonathan Scruggs. “Plenty of other florists are willing to provide flowers for same-sex ceremonies, yet the lawsuits against Barronelle jeopardize her business, livelihood, and personal assets. The court should stop this injustice.”

Attorney Alicia M. Berry of Liebler, Connor, Berry & St. Hilaire is assisting with the case and is one of nearly 2,500 private attorneys allied with ADF.

  • Fact sheet: State of Washington v. Arlene's Flowers

Alliance Defending Freedom is an alliance-building, non-profit legal organization that advocates for the right of people to freely live out their faith.


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Additional resources: Ingersoll v. Arlene’s Flowers, State of Washington v. Arlene’s Flowers, and Arlene’s Flowers v. Ferguson

Scroll down to view additional resources pertaining to this case and its surrounding issue
Thursday, December 18, 2014

Previous news releases:

  • 2014-12-04: State AG targets Wash. grandmother’s religious freedom and personal assets
  • 2013-10-28: Florist to court: Dismiss Wash. AG's attack on religious freedom
  • 2013-05-21: Wash. florist answers ACLU lawsuit
  • 2013-05-16: Wash. florist will not wilt, sues AG to reclaim religious freedom


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