November 12th, 2013 | Andrea Damewood News | Posted In: PDX News, Gay Rights

Gresham Cake Bakery that Refused Service to Gays Faces New Complaint

dish_cake_3930SWEET TASTE OF WICKEDNESS: This cake purchased from Gresham’s Sweet Cakes by Melissa bears an important message. - IMAGE: ronitphoto.com

Sweet Cakes by Melissa, the Gresham bakery that closed after refusing to create a wedding cake for a lesbian couple, faces a new state complaint.

The complaint, filed Nov. 7 with the Oregon Bureau of Labor and Industries and reported by WW news partner KATU, is from the partner of the woman who filed the original complaint.

Laurel Bowman-Cryer says that her fiancee, Rachel Cryer, went to the Gresham shop in January 2013 for a tasting, and informed the shop that there would be two brides. Co-owner Aaron Klein then told Cryer they "do not provide their services to same-sex couples."

The shop's denial of the women set off a media firestorm in February. Demonstrators lined up outside the shop protesting discrimination, and the store's Facebook page was inundated with messages showing support for the couple who'd been denied service. 

To test out which religious convictions would cause the shop to refuse business, Willamette Week called up the shop and asked them to make cakes for divorce, out-of-wedlock children, human stem cell research and a pagan solstice (with a pentacle design requested for the cake). All requests were responded to positively, with price quotes.

The shop announced it was closing and moving to an in-home business in September.

BOLI spokesman Charlie Burr says the new complaint will not significantly change the way the bureau's ongoing investigation is conducted.

 
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