Attorney General James Releases Statement on U.S. Supreme Court Decision Limiting LGBTQ+ Protections

NEW YORK – New York Attorney General Letitia James today released the following statement in response to the 6-3 decision by the United States Supreme Court to allow a wedding web designer to discriminate against LGBTQ+ individuals by refusing to provide services for same-sex weddings: 

“On this final day of Pride Month, the Supreme Court reminded all Americans that the fight for LGBTQ+ equality and dignity is very much ongoing. This disappointing decision to allow some businesses to ignore laws protecting LGBTQ+ couples from discrimination will have chilling effects. Once again, we have seen this court roll back the progress of the past and strip away rights and protections. I will always stand up and fight for the rights of all New Yorkers, because in our state we know that love is love.” 

The U.S. Supreme Court decision in 303 Creative LLC, et al. v. Elenis et al. ruled in favor of a Colorado web designer opposed to same-sex marriage. The web designer claimed a First Amendment right to an exemption from a Colorado state law that bars businesses from discriminating on the basis of sexual orientation. By a 6-3 vote, the Supreme Court ruled in favor of the web designer, allowing the business to refuse to provide web design services to same-sex couples for their weddings.   

Attorney General James has been a leader on standing up for the rights of all New Yorkers, including historically marginalized communities. Earlier this month, Attorney General James sent two letters asking Target to reaffirm its support of the LGBTQ+ community after their removal of Pride merchandise from stores, one as part of a coalition of attorneys general, and one together with fellow New York elected officials. Last month, she co-led a multistate coalition in submitting comments in support of robust anti-discrimination protections for transgender students at the federal level. In April 2023, Attorney General James called out Florida Governor Ron DeSantis for violating public university students’ right to privacy over his request for information on those receiving gender-affirming care. In March 2023, following a rise in anti-LGBTQ+ and anti-drag protests, rhetoric, and policies, Attorney General James hosted a first-of-its-kind Drag Story Hour Read-A-Thon for families in New York City. Last December, Attorney General James led a multi-state coalition of attorneys general to support equal access to gender-affirming care in West Virginia. Attorney General James has led or co-led coalitions of attorneys general to challenge policies prohibiting transgender students from using bathrooms which correspond with their gender identity in Indiana, Florida, and Virginia.