A wedding venue near Scranton is refusing to host same-sex ceremonies.
When Pennsylvania’s gay marriage ban was ruled unconstitutional by a federal court, Desiree Mark of Greenfield Twp. abandoned her plans to be married in New York or Connecticut and happily focused on planning a wedding in her home state. When the 29-year-old sent queries to Scranton area wedding venues requesting an appointment, she learned that marriage equality does not mean equality for gays and lesbians. “Unfortunately, we do not hold same sex marriages at our facility,” read the email from Courtney Killeen, wedding and event planner for Inne at the Abingtons. “I truly do hope you find somewhere that will fulfill all your wedding dreams.” Met at the North Abington Twp. venue Thursday, Ms. Killeen confirmed the email was authentic and reflected the policy of the Inne, not her personal belief. “I don’t agree with it,” she said, adding the owner, John O. Antolick, would be unlikely to comment publicly. Mr. Antolick did not respond to several requests for an interview.
Pennsylvania is one of 29 states with no statewide public accommodation protections for LGBT citizens although such protections exist in 34 Pennsylvania municipalities including Scranton. A spokesman for the ACLU quoted in the above-linked story notes that the venue’s refusal is currently legal. (Tipped by JMG reader Matthew)
RELATED: A bill before the Pennsylvania state legislature would ban discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity or expression in employment, housing and public accommodations. It currently has 96 co-sponsors in the House.