Chicago Alderman Claims Chick-Fil-A Has Agreed To End Anti-Gay Donations
Chicago Alderman Joe Moreno, who made national news when he announced that he would block new Chick-Fil-A franchises, says that the fast food chain has agreed to end its donations to groups that oppose same-sex marriage. The Chicago Tribune reports:
Ald. Proco "Joe" Moreno, 1st, said the restaurant has agreed to include a statement of respect for all sexual orientations in an internal document and promised that its not-for-profit arm would not contribute money to groups that oppose gay marriage. Though Moreno said he scored a "big win," the company made nearly identical pledges in a July 19 Facebook post that went up even before Moreno took issue with Chick-fil-A President Dan Cathy's opposition to gay marriage. The statement of respect also falls short of Moreno's goal of adding language opposing discrimination against gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender people to the company's employee handbook. Moreno said the statement will be included in a memo called "Chick-fil-A: Who We Are" to be distributed to all corporate employees and restaurant operators. The alderman said the memo will state the company's commitment to "treat every person with honor, dignity and respect — regardless of their beliefs, race, creed, sexual orientation or gender." It also would state that it is the company's "intent ... not to engage in political or social debates."The Tribune notes that Chick-Fil-A has not responded to multiple requests for a response to Moreno's claim about ending anti-gay donations, but did send them a copy of their Facebook post with "language similar to that which Moreno claims will be in their 'Who We Are' memo."
The Chicago Phoenix has posted a story headlined that the donations will in fact end.
The company outlined its shift in policy and practice in a letter addressed to Moreno, who in July declared that he would block the popular fast food chain from opening a new location in his ward unless they adopted gay-friendly policies. The letter, signed by Chick-fil-A’s Senior Director of Real Estate reads, “The WinShape Foundations 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.”Chicago's Civil Rights Agenda, which has filed a complaint against Chick-Fil-A with the Illinois Human Rights Commission, believes the story is true. Via press release:
In a letter addressed to Alderman Moreno and signed by Chick-fil-A’s Senior Director of Real Estate, it states, “The WinShape Foundations 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.” Winshape, a non-profit funded by Chick-fil-a, has donated millions of dollars to anti-LGBT groups, including some classified as hate groups, such as Focus on the Family and the National Organization for Marriage. In meetings the company executives clarified that they will no longer give to anti-gay organizations.IF Moreno's claim is proven, the howls of betrayal from NOM, the Family Research Council, and the entire hate industry will be delightful. But let's wait for Chick-Fil-A to acknowledge the story before doing any cartwheels.
“We are very pleased with this outcome and thank Alderman Moreno for his work on this issue,” said Anthony Martinez, executive director of The Civil Rights Agenda. “I think the most substantive part of this outcome is that Chick-fil-A has ceased donating to organizations that promote discrimination, specifically against LGBT civil rights. It has taken months of discussion, both with our organization and with the Alderman, for Chick-fil-A to come forward with these concessions and we feel this is a strong step forward for Chick-fil-A and the LGBT community, although it is only a step.”