Buffalo Joins San Antonio in Banning Chick-Fil-A from its Airport

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Two weeks since ThinkProgress broke the story Chick-Fil-A has continued donating to anti-gay groups as late as 2017, the restaurant chain has been prohibited from San Antonio International Airport, along with now the airport in Buffalo, New York.

“[Chick-Fil-A’s] long history of supporting and funding anti-LGBTQ organizations" was cited as the reasoning behind the decision, according to New York State Assemblyman Sean Ryan, who was among those fighting against the restaurant being at the airport.

A day after the report that Chick-Fil-A donated $1.8 million to groups with anti-gay policies, the San Antonio City Council of Texas declined by a 6-4 vote to approve plans by the chicken restaurant to open at the local airport because of the company's "legacy of anti-LGBTQ behavior."

The Georgia-based chain sports 2,400 locations that specialize in fried and grilled chicken. The company famously closes every Sunday to lets its workers "spend the day to rest and worship."

Its notoriety as an anti-gay company stems from consistently supporting groups that critics identify as discriminating against gays and lesbians; including the Fellowship of Christian Athletes, the Paul Anderson Youth Home, and the Salvation Army.

“Recent coverage about Chick-fil-A continues to drive an inaccurate narrative about our brand," the company said in a statement responding to the ThinkProgress report. "We want to make it clear that our sole focus is on providing delicious food and welcoming everyone – not being a part of a national political conversation. We do not have a political or social agenda. More than 145,000 people from different backgrounds and beliefs represent the Chick-fil-A brand. We embrace all people, regardless of religion, race, gender, ethnicity, sexual orientation or gender identity.“

Moreover, the company posted a response on its website, saying coverage of its donations has been misleading. “[Chick-Fil-A donates to] programs that support a diverse array of youth and educational programs nationwide," the company said.

This makes the airport of Buffalo, New York the second potentially lucrative contract to be dropped with the fast-food chain in light of recent reports of its anti-gay history and activities.

“We hope in the future the [Niagara Frontier Transportation Authority, which Buffalo falls under] will make every effort to contract with businesses that adhere to anti-discriminatory policies, and we’re confident another vendor who better represents the values of the Western New York community will replace Chick-fil-A as part of this project in the very near future,” Ryan stated in a tweet.


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