Would the desire to maintain a vegan "safe space" be enough to deny one who ardently believes in the medical importance of eating animal flesh entry to their establishment?

1 Answer 1


For the headline question: yes, you can exclude someone if they are behaving in an offensive manner. The restaurant is not the government and has no obligation to allow you to exercise your free speech rights on their premises.

For the body question: no, a consumer cannot be discriminated against on the basis of their beliefs.

  • Would the second point depend on whether the vegan establishment was commercial, charitable or religious? Ethical veganism was recognised as a protected belief in 2020 journals.openedition.org/rdctss/931, and charitable or religious organisations can generally restrict their membership to those of a given religion or belief. So it seems plausible that a vegan charity could bar non-vegans?
    – Clumsy cat
    Jul 24, 2022 at 14:30
  • Okay, but they are clearly a public service provider. And if vegan is a protected belief then so too surely must carnivore be. As to Dale's answer, is the simple wearing of ungratuitous expressions of one's protected beliefs on one's garments an active offensive behaviour? Jul 25, 2022 at 16:25
  • As to @Clumsycat's comment, must they declare/maintain that as a standing policy to only serve vegans? Or can they exclude people on that basis in an ad hoc way? Jul 25, 2022 at 16:26
  • I don't think they could bar non vegans if it was open to the public rather than a member's club where you had to register. The question then becomes whether they can ban someone for their clothing based on the protected belief content. I think they couldn't if not because the banning would be seen to betray a refusal of service to someone based on their belief, or if it was simply a ban on wearing the besloganed garments because they would be treating the customer differently on the basis of their protected belief as a public service provider must not do under the equality act 2010. In other Jul 25, 2022 at 16:29
  • @JosephP. So it's tricky to prove a negative, but I suspect eating meat is not (and will not become) a protected belief, because vegetarianism didn't pass that bar. I'd love some analysis on why. There is an interesting list here; lexology.com/library/…
    – Clumsy cat
    Jul 25, 2022 at 16:30

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