The suit accuses Kroger of violating Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and Title I of the Civil Rights Act of 1991, claiming the store “refused to accommodate the religious beliefs of Lawson and Rickerd, and disciplined and terminated them because of their religious beliefs and in retaliation for requesting a religious accommodation.”
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Other employees also refused to wear the apron -- but for reasons unrelated to religion -- and they were not fired, according to the lawsuit.
When asked about the intent of the rainbow, Kroger would not comment on the matter citing the pending litigation, NBC reported.
Both women “believe in the literal interpretation of the Bible” and “hold a sincerely held religious belief that homosexuality is a sin,” the suit states, and that each “believed wearing the logo showed her advocacy of the [LGBTQ] community, which she could not do.”
The women are seeking financial compensation for “emotional pain and suffering, humiliation, inconvenience, and loss of enjoyment of life,” but the amount of damages was not revealed. The suit also calls for reforms to store policies.
Kroger, based in Cincinnati, is one of the nation’s largest grocery retailers.