The Jacksonville, Florida Hands on Children’s Museum came under scrutiny on Friday after a lesbian mother was told she and her partner would have to pay extra to renew their three-year old family membership because they weren’t a real family. Karen Lee-Duffell said it felt “like a punch in the gut.”
The museum director wouldn’t respond to Karen Lee-Duffell, but told a local Jacksonville TV station that “memberships are very specific and do not allow substitutions.”
Now, after pressure via a Change.org petition, a Facebook page, news reports from The New Civil Rights Movement, then Think Progress, and finally, the Huffington Post, the museum late last night quietly responded to media criticism — by raising their prices.
Last week, an annual family membership cost $49.50, for “Mom, Dad, & Children under 18.” Of course, that should have read, “Two parents and children under 18.”
The museum tried to charge Karen Lee-Duffell the $49.50 plus $10 for one extra person — because her family has two moms, so a membership for her family would cost $59.50.
Now, as you can see from the museum’s new pricing, all two-parent families with children will have to pay $59.50.
Old price structure on the left, new price structure on the right:
It’s kind of the Hands on Children’s Museum’s way of saying, “OK, you win, but now everyone will have to pay for it.”
Equality. At a price.
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