The Boston-based company behind the Sam Adams beer brand on Friday announced it would not participate in this weekend’s annual South Boston St. Patrick’s Day Parade.
The decision followed the breakdown of negotiations between the event organizers and a group of gay military veterans who wanted to march in the parade.
“We were hopeful that both sides of this issue would be able to come to an agreement that would allow everyone, regardless of orientation, to participate in the parade,” the Boston Beer Company said in a statement. “But given the current status of the negotiations, we realize this may not be possible.”
The company’s statement was released by MassEquality, the group which had filed an application with the parade to allow 20 members of LGBT [Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender] Veterans for Equality to march, according to The Boston Globe.
On Wednesday, the newspaper reported on the breakdown in negotiations. New Boston Mayor Martin Walsh (D), who has marched in past parades but said he would only do so this year if gay people were allowed, had tried to broker a compromise, along with Rep. Stephen Lynch (D-MA). The parade organizers invited the LGBT Veterans for Equality members to march in the parade, but on the condition that they not make any reference to their sexual orientation during the parade. MassEquality rejected the condition.
Earlier this month, the parade organizers rejected the gay veterans’ application, calling it a “ploy by them to enter this parade under false pretenses.”