Christian florist agrees to settle with same-sex couple after years-long legal battle

Remember the case of the Christian florist who refused to provide her services for a same-sex couple’s wedding? It’s now been settled.

Fox News reports that Barronelle Stutzman, the florist, has thrown in the towel and agreed to a settlement with couple Rob Ingersoll and Curt Freed, meaning the roughly decade-long legal battle is finally over. 

Settlement reached

Reports indicate that Stutzman sent a letter to the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) on Thursday announcing that she’d agreed to the settlement offer.

As part of this agreement, Stutzman will pay Ingersoll and Freed $5,000 — significantly less than they had initially asked for — and she will withdraw her Supreme Court petition.

In exchange, Ingersoll and Freed will drop their lawsuit, which targeted Stutzman’s business and personal assets.

With the settlement, lower court decisions that went against Stutzman will stand.

“We’re all in trouble”

In an interview with Fox News, the 76-year-old florist and grandmother indicated that she will soon be retiring from her business, Arlene’s Flowers, which will now be left to its employees.

She also demonstrated that she remains true to her beliefs to this day, saying that her faith is “not for sale.”

“We’re all in trouble — whether we’re religious or not — when we don’t have the freedom to live consistent with our faith and our beliefs, when I don’t have the freedom to run my business according to my beliefs, live my life according to my beliefs,” Stutzman said, according to Fox.

“Rob and Curt have every right to live the way they do and the way they feel with their beliefs, and I’m just asking for that same [right],” she added.

Ingersoll and Freed similarly released a statement celebrating what they perceived as a victory. “We took on this case because we were worried about the harm being turned away would cause LGBTQ people,” they said, as Fox reported. “We are glad the Washington Supreme Court rulings will stay in place to ensure that same-sex couples are protected from discrimination and should be served by businesses like anyone else.”

The couple went on: “We are also pleased to support our local PFLAG’s work to support LGBTQ people in the Tri-Cities area. It was painful to be turned away and we are thankful that this long journey for us is finally over.”

Latest News