successfully petitioned their school to drop Chick-fil-A as a weekly food vendor. The students, upset that Chick-fil-A allows franchises to donate significant amounts of food to anti-gay organizations, as well as the fact that Chick-fil-A's charitable arm has been partnering with some of the fiercest anti-gay organizations in the country, wanted to take a stand to keep homophobia off campus.
They succeeded, and potentially have sent a powerful message to other colleges and universities that have Chick-fil-A chains on school grounds.
In the case of Indiana University South Bend, the students who banded together believed that Chick-fil-A's connections to groups like the Pennsylvania Family Institute, Focus on the Family, the Ruth Institute, and the National Organization for Marriage was enough evidence to show that support for anti-gay politics ran deep within Chick-fil-A's corporate and charitable culture.
Turns out they're not the only college campus taking a good look at Chick-fil-A's politics. Check out the students at Florida Gulf Coast University (FGCU), who are pushing back against their school for plans to open a Chick-fil-A in their Student Union. According to their Facebook page, the group wants to make sure all FGCU students know about Chick-fil-A's ties to anti-gay groups.
"The Student Union is a place where all students should feel safe and welcome. By allowing a company with a history of bigotry and homophobia into our campus, we potentially allow FGCU to place monetary gain above the comfort and safety of the very students who are expected to frequent the Union Building," the students behind the group say.
A sophomore at FGCU, Rashad Davis, also told the school's newspaper that allowing a Chick-fil-A on campus would only line the pockets of people peddling homophobia.
"We have the right to choose where our money is going. Giving money to an organization that supports anti-gay networks and isn't environmentally conscious is the wrong thing to do. And the more we pay them, the bigger they grow," said Davis.
His comments were echoed by senior Tyler Offerman.
"We don't want Chick-Fil-A on our campus because of its complete lack of environmental programs, policies, or practices," said Offerman, "and its very close involvement and funding of numerous individuals and organizations which actively discriminate against people because of sexual orientation."
Three cheers for tying the environment to the fight for equality. Interested in learning more about the students fighting Chick-fil-A at FGCU? Check out their Facebook page here. And if you want to stand in solidarity with both students at Indiana University South Bend and FGCU, sign this petition to support students standing up to Chick-fil-A's anti-gay connections.
Do you have a Chick-fil-A on your campus? If you do, shoot us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org, and let us know if there is (or isn't) any activism going on to raise awareness about Chick-fil-A's ties to anti-gay organizations.
petition text -
I recently became aware that a group of students at Indiana University South Bend successfully petitioned their school to drop Chick-fil-A as a weekly food service vendor. The students, upset that Chick-fil-A allows franchises to donate significant amounts of food to anti-gay organizations, as well as the fact that Chick-fil-A's charitable arm has been partnering with some of the fiercest anti-gay organizations in the country, wanted to take a stand to keep homophobia off campus.
Meanwhile, a student group at Florida Gulf Coast University has started to organize to keep Chick-fil-A off campus, challenging the company's role in supporting organizations like the National Organization for Marriage, Focus on the Family, the Pennsylvania Family Institute and more -- either directly through their franchises, or through the company's charitable arm, the WinShape Foundation.
I stand in solidarity with these students, as someone who cares deeply about equality and someone who supports full civil rights for LGBT people. These students should be commended for challenging corporate support for anti-gay organizations, and should have their voices heard on campus.
Thank you for your time.
[Your name here]