The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has launched into an investigation on the banning of Chick-fil-A by New York and Texas airports because of the company’s stance on LGBTQ issues, reported NBC News.

The San Antonio International Airport (SAT) and the Buffalo Niagara International Airport (BUF) both excluded Chick-fil-A from their concession contracts after it was revealed that the Atlanta-based fast food chain’s charitable arm, the Chick-fil-A Foundation, donated almost $2 million to organizations with anti-LGBTQ ideals.

FAA officials told NBC News that they had received complaints that this exclusion was discrimination against a private company on the basis of “religious beliefs.”

“FAA’s Office of Civil Rights has notified the SAT and BUF that it has opened investigations into these complaints,” FAA said. “The FAA notes that federal requirements prohibit airport operators from excluding persons on the basis of religious creed from participating in airport activities that receive or benefit from FAA grant funding.”

One of the groups that filed a complaint was First Liberty Institute. Keisha Russell, an attorney with the group, said they were “pleased that the FAA responded to our request by opening an investigation into San Antonio for its blatant, illegal religious discrimination against Chick-fil-A.”

“American business owners should not have to suffer because they want to operate their businesses in accordance with the religious beliefs,” Russell continued. “Few things are more un-American than government hostility against religion.”

A spokesperson for Chick-fil-A said the company is not involved in the investigation and has “no social or political stance… We welcome and embrace all people, regardless of religion, race, gender, ethnicity, sexual orientation, or gender identity.”

2 Responses

  1. Gary Henry Uitvlugt

    When religious beliefs discriminate against basic human rights, religion is not a get out of jail card free. Businesses need to follow norms that do not harm prospective customers. A hate based business can not expect special from the FAA or other federal agencies.

  2. Lee Alexander

    I am not sure why any airport, especially smaller airports, would consider Chick-fil-A an appropriate tenant. Airports operate 7 days a week. Chick-Fil-A’s policy of being closed one of those seven days has a direct impact on income, as well as resulting in fewer choices for passengers on that one day. While Chick-fil-A’s choice not to operate one day of the week is fine for stand alone outlets, it really doesn’t work for an airport.


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