British Supreme Court Rules Against Discriminating Bed & Breakfast Owners


Hazelmary and Peter Bull (B&B)

The Supreme Court of the United Kingdom has ruled against Hazelmary and Peter Bull, a Christian couple who refused to provide a room in their bed & breakfast to gay couple Steven Preddy and Martyn Hall. They explained that the B&B is their home, and their “religiously-informed judgment of conscience” could not permit them to recognize Preddy and Hall’s civil partnership. The Bulls have lost previously in county court and the Court of Appeal, having been ordered ordered to pay £3,600 (just under $6,000) for violating nondiscrimination laws.

Lady Hale, deputy president of the Supreme Court, explained why five members of the Court sided with the same-sex couple:

HALE: Sexual orientation is a core component of a person’s identity which requires fulfillment through relationships with others of the same orientation.

A judge similarly ruled against another UK B&B owner last year for treating a same-sex couple “less favorably than she would treat unmarried heterosexual couples in the same circumstances.”