The conservative fried chicken restaurant chain Chick-fil-A has agreed to stop funding groups opposing rights for LGBT people, some of which have been labeled as hate groups.
A press release from The Civil Rights Agenda (TCRA) said that Chick-fil-A had confirmed to Chicago Alderman Proco “Joe” Moreno that its nonprofit, the WinShape Foundation, would no longer donate money to anti-LGBT organizations.
“The WinShape Foundations [sic] is now taking a much closer look at the organizations it considers helping, and in that process will remain true to its stated philosophy of not supporting organizations with political agendas,” the letter stated.
TCRA noted that the company had clarified that groups like Focus on the Family and the National Organization for Marriage would cut off from future donations.
In a memo, Chick-fil-A executives have also told franchisees and stakeholders that the company’s policy is to “treat every person with honor, dignity and respect-regardless of their beliefs, race, creed, sexual orientation and gender,” and the “intent is not to engage in political or social debates.” Those guidelines were included in a document titled “Chick-fil-A: Who We Are.”
As a result of the new stance, Moreno has agreed to drop his efforts to block Chick-fil-A from opening a new restaurant in Chicago’s Northwest Side ward.
“We are very pleased with this outcome and thank Alderman Moreno for his work on this issue,” TCRA executive director Anthony Martinez said in a statement. “I think the most important part of this outcome is that Chick-fil-A has ceased their donations to anti-gay groups in 2011 and going forward. With some of the groups that they were donating to being classified as hate groups, and others actively trying to halt the movement toward full civil rights for LGBT people, Chick-fil-A has taken a big step forward.”
“We feel this is a strong step forward for Chick-fil-A and the LGBT community; although it is only a step,” Martinez added to Chicago Phoenix. “I’m not going to be eating at Chick-fil-A any time soon. … I think people should make that decision for themselves.”
Earlier this year, Chick-fil-A founder Dan Cathy told the Baptist Press that his company was “guilty as charged” of working to prevent marriage equality, sparking to a series of protests and counter-protests.