American law wants to oblige the photographer to register same-sex unions | Photo: Sharon McCutcheon / Unsplash
Wedding photographer Bob Updegrove, a resident of the state of Virginia, USA, is fighting in US court against a state law that requires him to accept work commissioned by clients of the same sex. In action, the photographer demands that his right to freedom of expression and the free exercise of his profession be guaranteed.
According to him, his rights are violated after the approval of the Virginia Values Act, sanctioned in 2020, which determines a series of measures allegedly against gender discrimination. By law, Updegrove, who is a Christian, can’t help but snap photos of gay couples if someone hires him.
The same legislation also prevents him from publicly explaining, on his own studio’s website, the religious reasons why he only celebrates marriage ceremonies between a man and a woman. According to the Virginia Values Act, such actions would be “discriminatory” and could subject the photographer to fines of $ 50,000 to $ 100,000 for violation.
Bob Updegrove’s first claim was dismissed by the US court. Now, with the support of Alliance Defending Freedom, an American entity that defends fundamental rights, he will appeal to the American Court of Appeal. There is still no deadline for a final decision.