Since posting the information about Hands On Originals, the GLSO has received a lot of attention. The board members of the GLSO have been listening. The board has decided to file a discrimination complaint with the HRC. The board does not wish to engage in nor does it condone name-calling, bad-mouthing, or threatening businesses. The board has two simple goals in this situation: 1) educating the community and 2) refusing to tolerate discrimination.
The board has already begun educating the community by posting this situation to its websites. It will continue to educate throughout the process of the complaint.
As for the second goal, the board does not agree with discrimination in any manner and will not tolerate discrimination. Lexington has had a Fairness Ordinance for 13 years because the citizens of Lexington voted against discrimination. The GLSO believes in the Fairness Ordinance and refuses to let discrimination go unaddressed. As a result, board president Aaron Baker filed the complaint today.
As part of our commitment to transparency, we have included the text of our complaint below:
“The Pride Festival committee of the Gay and Lesbian Services Organization (GLSO) received a quote from Hands On Originals in December by phone (from an employee named Kaleb) to produce t-shirts for the 5th annual Pride Festival in Lexington. The quote from Hands On Originals was the lowest bid from a local company, and the committee intended to move forward with having them produce shirts. However, a committee member first called the business with the intention of finding out whether any lower price could be negotiated. He reached someone there who asked who he had previously talked to. At that moment, he could not remember their name, and when the name “Blaine” was suggested, he agreed. Numerous phone messages back and forth were exchanged before the committee member was finally able to speak with Blaine, who represented himself as an owner of Hands On Originals. His inquiries were related to what the GLSO was, what our mission was, and what we were promoting. The committee member explained, including that the t-shirt would only contain a stylized number “5” on the front and the name of the festival, and sponsors on the rear. When Blaine learned that it was a gay pride festival, he asked, “You know we’re a Christian organization, don’t you?” He then continued on to say that Hands On Originals would not print shirts related to a gay pride festival. He suggested that he could refer us to a different business who would print the shirts. Our committee member told them he would take that offer to the board, but that he felt that we would not want to do business with anyone who did business with Hands On Originals, based on their discrimination. On March 25th, the GLSO board met in emergency session and agreed to file a complaint with the HRC under the Lexington Fairness Ordinance.”
Stay tuned to the GLSO and Pride Festival websites for more information. Thank you for all the community support.