Brush & Nib Studio v. City of Phoenix (Arizona Supreme Court, 2018)

State Supreme Court ,

The City of Phoenix has an anti-discrimination law that prohibits businesses from discriminating against customers on the basis of sexual orientation and other personal characteristics.  Based on its religious objections to same-sex marriage, a local art design company does not want to create and sell wedding invitations to same-sex couples, which would violate the Phoenix law. The company filed a lawsuit invoking the Arizona Free Exercise of Religion Act (“FERA”) and First Amendment, for the purpose of obtaining a religious exemption from the law’s prohibition on discrimination against LGBTQ+ individuals, which state trial and appellate courts rejected.  ADL joined a brief to the Arizona Supreme Court filed by civil rights and religious groups. It asserts that interpreting FERA to exempt the company from the anti-discrimination law would violate the Establishment Clause. The brief also stresses that anti-discrimination laws like Phoenix’s embody First Amendment principles by prohibiting religious discrimination and protecting our nation’s vibrant diversity.