Tesco are in the process of reviewing the judgement in the infamous ‘gay cake’ case, in which Ashers Bakery were found to have discriminated against a gay customer.
Tesco’s stocks a variety of Ashers products, and was probed on Twitter by several users if they had and comments regarding the verdict of the case. “We are reviewing the judgement and will discuss it with Ashers,” said the supermarket chain.
“Tesco has a great track record of working with local suppliers, large and small, from across Northern Ireland.
“Our focus and our commitment is to serve customers in all communities, from all backgrounds and beliefs.”
Tesco later confirmed that no Ashers products have currently been removed from the supermarkets shelves.
Ashers General Manager, Daniel McArthur said: “We’re extremely disappointed with the judgement.”
“We’ve said from the start that our issue was with the message on the cake, not the customer and we didn’t know what the sexual orientation of Mr Lee was, and it wasn’t relevant either. We’ve always been happy to serve any customers that come into our shops.
“The ruling suggests that all business owners will have to be willing to promote any cause or campaign no matter how much they disagree with it. Or as the Equality Commission has suggested, they should perhaps just close down, and that can’t be right.
“But we won’t be closing down, we certainly don’t think we’ve done anything wrong and we will be taking legal advice to consider our options for appeal.”
Mr Lee, who launched legal action against Ashers was awarded £500 in damages.
“The defendants are not a religious organisation. They are conducting a business for profit and, notwithstanding their genuine religious beliefs, there are no exceptions available under (law) which apply to this case,” said Judge Isobel Brownlie.