Passengers traveling through San Antonio International Airport craving waffle fries and chicken will be out of luck, as Chick-fil-A has been dropped from the concessions lineup of SAT due to the company’s support of anti-LGBTQ organizations.
On Thursday, the San Antonio City Council approved a seven-year contract with Paradies Lagardère to open new restaurants in the San Antonio International Airport’s Terminal A, including Smoke Shack and Boss Bagels and Coffee. While the contract initially included Chick-fil-A, the council voted 6-4 to only approve the deal should the chicken chain be excluded, according to the council’s website.
“With this decision, the City Council reaffirmed the work our city has done to become a champion of equality and inclusion. San Antonio is a city full of compassion, and we do not have room in our public facilities for a business with a legacy of anti-LGBTQ behavior,” Councilman Roberto Treviño said in a statement following the vote. “San Antonio is a city full of compassion, and we do not have room in our public facilities for a business with a legacy of anti-LGBTQ behavior.”
The decision to block the chain from opening in the airport came just one day after ThinkProgress published a report alleging that the fast food chain had donated more than $1.65 million in 2017 to the Fellowship of Christian Athletes, which requires a “sexual purity” policy for its employees.
The Chick-fil-A Foundation also donated $6,000 to the Paul Anderson Youth Home, a “Christian residential home for trouble youth” that teaches boys that homosexuality is wrong and that same-sex marriage is “rage against Jesus Christ and His values.” A total of $15,000 was donated to the Salvation Army, a group that has a long record of accusations of LGBTQ discrimination.
“Our intention both at the corporate and restaurant level is to have a positive influence on our communities by donating to programs that benefit youth and education and are welcoming to all,” Rodney Bullard, the Chick-fil-A vice president of corporate social responsibility and the executive director of the Chick-fil-A Foundation, said in a statement addressing the report. “We are proud of the impact we’ve been able to make so far, and we have a lot yet to do.”
“We have no policy of discrimination against any group. We do not have a political or social agenda and more than 120,000 people from different backgrounds and beliefs represent the Chick-fil-A brand,” the statement concluded.
The fast food chain’s ban from the San Antonio International Airport follows the November 2018 incident in which New Jersey’s Rider University removed the fast food chain from a student survey asking which restaurants they wanted brought to campus. The university cited the company's attitudes toward the LGBTQ community as the reason for nixing the option.