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Bar Owner Loses Business Over Supposed Discrimination

In Oregon, Chris Penner is the owner of a bar formerly known as the Twilight Room Annex or the P Club. On Wednesday, the Oregon Court of Appeals affirmed that he has to pay $400,000 in damages to a group of transgender patrons after they were asked to stay away. The state Bureau of Labor and Industries ordered the penalty in 2013, stating that the Portland bar violated a law that prohibits discrimination based on gender, sexual orientation or gender identity. Starting in 2012, the Rose City T-Girls, a group of transgender customers started frequenting the bar.

Penner said his business declined so he left two voicemail messages for one member. One message said "People are not coming in because they just don't want to be there on a Friday night now. In the beginning sales were doing fine, but they've been on a steady decrease so I have to look at what the problem is, what the reason is and take care of it."

Penner said people were incorrectly assuming the club was a gay or “tranny” bar. Penner's attorney, Jonathan Radmacher, said that his client may continue the legal fight as he merely expressed a desire and did not refuse service to anyone who came into the bar. Cassandra Lynn was the T-Girl who received the voicemail messages. The opinion stated that there were 11 aggrieved people in the case. Penner laid off five employees and closed the Twilight Room Annex in April 2014 after his bank accounts were seized in connection with the $400,000 judgment.

Photo: Daily Mail

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