Watch: Lesbian Woman Faces Birthday Cake Rejection from Dairy Queen, Gets Apology

by Kilian Melloy

EDGE Staff Reporter

Friday January 22, 2021

A young lesbian woman in Cochrane, Canada, faced rejection at a local Dairy Queen when her family's request for a birthday cake message was denied by the establishment's supervisor, Global News reports.

Summer Gibbons and her sister had requested a cake reading "Happy Birthday Lesbian" for Gibbons' 22nd birthday celebration. After initially being told that was okay by a female employee, Gibbons' sister Gracie was told by a supervisor that "it was family establishment and they can't put that on a cake for other families to see," Gibbons related.

When Gibbons' family took the issue to the establishment's owner, "He said it's policy because it was sexual in nature to put on a cake," Gibbons recalled.

Gibbons had known in seventh grade she was lesbian, she told Global News, but it wasn't until just two years ago that she came out. Since then she's found love and acceptance - until now.

Gibbons spoke of "Having that feeling of not be welcomed for being who I am and that not being okay," and said, "I only came out to my grandparents a year ago and I struggled with it.

"It's about being comfortable with who you are and this makes me not comfortable because of fear of judgement and rejection."

Gracie said it was "upsetting" to see her sister treated in such a manner. "She felt embarrassed and ashamed and she should never have to feel that for who she is," Gracie told Global News. "Nobody could write 'lesbian?' It's not a bad word. We shouldn't be hiding it from people."

"It hurts," added Gibbons' openly gay roommate, Liam Armsworthy. "It hurts the heart."

Despite her experience at that particular Dairy Queen, the report said, Gobbins was able to get her cake after all - simply by driving to different franchise location.

The establishment's owner, Tim Morrison, put out a statement in which he apologized to Gibbons.

Saying there "is no place for discrimination in my restaurant," and noting that his location bearing the name of the famous brand seeks "to create custom cakes that are inclusive and nondiscriminatory," Morrison said his establishment has a policy "that custom cake orders only can include inclusive and nondiscriminatory language".

Morrison said, "I acknowledge we did not properly follow our policy," and vowed that he would be "retraining the team on custom cake orders," Global News reported.

Gibbons said she accepted the apology, adding, "maybe he can get retrained himself."

To see the Global News news clip, follow this link.

Kilian Melloy serves as EDGE Media Network's Associate Arts Editor and Staff Contributor. His professional memberships include the National Lesbian & Gay Journalists Association, the Boston Online Film Critics Association, The Gay and Lesbian Entertainment Critics Association, and the Boston Theater Critics Association's Elliot Norton Awards Committee.