A company which owns a Christian dating site has been sued after only offering the option for users to pursue heterosexual relationships.
Spark Networks Inc., which owns Christian Mingle as well as other sites, has agreed to pay more than $450,000 to two gay plaintiffs who claimed their website was discriminatory.
The parent company’s websites asked users to define themselves either as ‘a man seeking a woman’ or ‘a woman seeking a man’.
The ruling in the plaintiff’s favour is based on Californian law, which states that businesses must offer “full and equal accommodations” to people regardless of sexual orientation.
Spark did not accept it had done anything wrong in during court proceedings but said it would be changing its websites to accommodate users looking for partners of the same sex.
Some have praised the decision calling it a victory for equality while others say it’s an attack on traditional Christian views on sexuality.
Andrea Williams from Christian Concern told Premier’s News Hour the company has been forced to bow to pressure: “This is cohesion to the new prevailing political orthodoxy.
“What the state is seeking to do here is seeking to impose something that will run completely against the conscience and ethos of that Christian dating agency.”
Andrea Williams said she thinks a relationships between a man and a woman: “That’s actually the most progressive thing to be saying to our society right now, to be promoting purity.
“That’s what we need, our identity is in Jesus Christ.”
She went on to say that society’s view is having pressure on Christian beliefs in the UK as well as the USA.
“We’re already seeing this happen here in the United Kingdom, perhaps not with regard to the dating agency, but people that believe in marriage between a man and woman, people that believe children need a mother and father, find themselves in trouble with the law,” she said.