ChristianMingle and other religious dating websites now must include gay singles

If you’re happy about gay marriage becoming the law the land, just wait until you hear about the breakthrough in equality from the online dating world.

Following a California court ruling, Christian dating site, Mormon dating site, and Jewish dating site – all owned by Spark Networks — must now include equal browsing rights for gay folks who for some bizarre reason want to hold on to their religious faith.

According to the CBC, the changes came under way when in 2013, two gay men noticed that they couldn’t set their search features to find potential same-sex partners on ChristianMingle.

In filing a class-action lawsuit, the men alleged that Spark was breaking California anti-discrimination laws by making it impossible for members of the LGBT community to use its services.

“Spark has engaged in a systemic and intentional pattern and practice of arbitrary discrimination against gays and lesbians throughout California by denying them full and equal services, accommodations, advantages and privileges in connection with many of its commercial dating services,” reads the 2013 class-action complaint.

California state law mandates that “all business establishments of every kind whatsoever” treat every person within their jurisdiction equally regardless of sex, race, religion, marital status and sexual orientation, etc.

Last week, approximately 2½ years after the lawsuit was originally filed, Judge Jane L. Johnson of the Superior Court of California in Los Angeles County approved a settlement agreement in which Spark agreed to modify its site and search features to include LGBT singles within two years.

The company did not admit to any wrongdoing, but it did agree to pay each plaintiff $9,000 US and cover the $450,000 they had accumulated together in legal fees.

The homepage on ChristianMingle now only asks users for their gender with no options for searching for the user’s desired gender. The court agreement says this will change, but that’s meeting some heavy pushback from people opposed the ruling.

Sky Palma

Before launching DeadState back in 2012, Sky Palma has been blogging about politics, social issues and religion for over a decade. He lives in Los Angeles and also enjoys Brazilian jiu jitsu, chess, music and art.

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