Gay-only hotels to be investigated for breaching equality laws

In the wake of the recent Christian B&B court decision that found Christian B&B owners guilty of discrimination, the Equality and Human Rights Commission is to investigate whether gay-only hotels breach new laws designed to prevent people being treated unfairly in the provision of goods or services.

The investigation will allow the government watchdog to establish an “objective balance” by considering if gays-only accommodation also defies the legislation.

Its lawyers are now investigating the issue and the EHRC says it has not ruled out taking legal action against “gay-only” hotels if they are deemed to be discriminating against heterosexuals but it admits that it has not received any complaints from the public about such establishments.

Mark Hurst, who runs a “gay-only” guesthouse in Blackpool, told The Telegraph that he could lose his homosexual clientele if he is forced to accept heterosexual people.

“Many of them would feel more self-conscious. Many of our guests like to just sit on the settee in the lounge and cuddle up to watch a film,” he said.

“They can hold hands and have a little kiss and would behave in a way they may not if they were in a mixed crowd.”

The EHRC also commented to The Telegraph “As discriminatory issues concerning ‘Christian’ bed and breakfast establishments and hotels have been officially brought to our attention, and as we are testing the law in this area, there is a need for the Commission to establish an ‘objective balance’.

“We are, therefore, looking in to the matter of ‘gay-only’ hotels’/B&B establishments and the potentially discriminatory policies towards heterosexual couples that some of those ‘gay-only’ establishments may hold.”


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