Friday, August 03, 2012

Campus Pride Calls on University Leaders to Uphold Non-Discrimination Policies And End Chick-fil-A Relationships

       "No college or university wants to be associated with hate.”

TransGriot Note: From Campus Pride

CHARLOTTE, N.C. – Campus Pride, the leading national nonprofit for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) and ally college students, condemns Chick-Fil-A for their funding of documented hate groups and asks that colleges and universities across the country disassociate with Chick-Fil-A immediately, as follows:
  • Pass a student government policy/resolution that expresses opposition to Chick-Fil-A on the basis of their direct funding of documented hate groups and prevents further association with the brand Chick-Fil-A.
  • End food service contracts that include Chick-Fil-A, amend these contracts, or refuse negotiations with companies like the Aramark Corporation, which include Chick-Fil-A among dining choices.
  • Pull out of conferences, events and sports games where Chick-Fil-A is a sponsor.
“If colleges wish to create an atmosphere that is respectful, inclusive, diverse and fosters safety for all students, then associating with Chick-Fil-A, which is on record funding documented hate groups, is downright wrong and has to end immediately,” said Shane Windmeyer, executive director of Campus Pride. “Saying ‘no’ to Chick-Fil-A is saying 'no' to hate.”

Over the past decade, college student leaders have long protested Chick-Fil-A due to its discriminatory stances and have asked for its removal from retail dining options offered on campus. New York University, University of Southern Mississippi, Indiana University, Duke University and University of North Carolina Wilmington are among such institutions and reflect the wide spread efforts to kick Chick-Fil-A off campus for not adhering to campus policies of nondiscrimination.

“Chick-Fil-A and its founding family have the right to believe, say and do whatever they want -- including funding hate groups. This issue is not about freedom of speech. Campus Pride respects every individual or company's right to express their opinions and beliefs – even if these beliefs are counter to our values,” said Windmeyer.

“The real issue is about choosing businesses to operate on campus that uphold campus policies of nondiscrimination and that do not funnel monies to documented hate groups. Doing so, impedes a college from being a safe space for all students to learn, live and grow.”

Chick-Fil-A funding of documented hate groups, like the Family Research Council (FRC), which advocates the criminalization and death of LGBT people, is clearly unacceptable. In 2010, Chick-Fil-A supported FRC and its $25,000 effort to stop the United States Congress from passing a bill denouncing the execution of homosexuals in Uganda. The company also sponsored Exodus International, an "ex-gay" group claiming to "cure homosexuality" at devastating psychological costs. The funding has received little attention prior to the recent controversy.

Campus Pride believes that increased press coverage will only ignite further efforts to end the fast food chain operations on college campuses. Windmeyer reiterates that Campus Pride is "committed to help campuses end food service contracts with Chick-Fil-A" and this August will be sending a letter against Chick-Fil-A to the college presidents of the nearly 400+ colleges and universities that participate annually in the Campus Pride national LGBT-friendly college fair program and its Campus Pride Index online benchmarking tool to create safer, more welcoming campus communities.

“Chick-Fil-A’s logo is now a symbol of hate because of the company’s outward, unapologetic funding of documented hate groups like the Family Research Council. No college or university wants to be associated with hate.”

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