Freshman Pens Petition To Rid NYU Of Homophobic Chick-fil-A

The latest in the Chick-fil-A saga is a petition that has surfaced online, written by Gallatin freshman Hillary Dworkoski. In the past we’ve brought you news of the conservative chain, and how to avoid eating their homophobic chicken. Now Dworkoski is hoping to change the Chick-fil-A, housed in Upstein, from an avoided eatery to a nonexistent one.

Hosted by change.org, her petition reads:

While Chick-fil-A denies having an “agenda against anyone,” an investigation by Equality Matters revealed that Chick-fil-A’s charitable arm, WinShape, donated nearly $2 million to anti-gay groups in 2009 alone. That $2 million supported groups such as Focus On The Family, Exodus International, and the Family Research Council.

And New York City’s only Chick-fil-A is located in a cafeteria in a New York University dorm.

NYU prides itself on being a diverse, open and inclusive campus community. Unfortunately, maintaining a contract with an anti-gay vendor like Chick-fil-A undermines what makes this university so great.

While the NYU Student Senators Council recently voted not to remove vendors for political reasons, they did retain that the school could remove vendors that violate human or labor rights. As Secretary Clinton recently announced, “gay rights are human rights, and human rights are gay rights.” As such, I respectfully request that NYU remove Chick-fil-A from campus.

Posted on January 20th, the petition has already obtained 758 signatures.

Dworkoski felt compelled to take action against NYU because she saw a disconnection between the ideals of NYU and Chick-fil-A.

“The main reason I decided to go to NYU out of the many schools I applied to was because NYU is the only place I felt like I could truly fit in and the student body is incredibly diverse and accepting.  This was really important to me in choosing schools and I expected that NYU would be completely accepting of all types of students.

“When I first heard that Chick-fil-A was anti-gay, I was really surprised that it had remained for so long despite the large number of LGBT students at NYU, so I decided to try and do something about it.  That’s when I made the petition,” said Dworkoski.

“The reason I chose to do it on change.org is because it allows people from all around the world to sign, and they have.  I haven’t created a physical petition, but many other students have been sharing the link on facebook, which has really helped get the word around,” said Dworkoski.

Dworkoski has encountered some frustrations. She said, “Some students disagree merely because they love the food at Chick-fil-A.  This has been very hard.”

But Dworkoski is determined. “I hope to gain as many signatures as possible in order to put pressure on the university to remove Chick-fil-A.  They need to take responsibility for their actions,” said Dworkoski. She is optimistic that within a few weeks the petition will reach 5,000 signatures.

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    27 Comments

  1. Justin Epstein says

    If you have such a difficult time coping with the fact that Chick-Fil-A has an evil anti-gay agenda (which, let’s be real, it’s a fast food restaurant, their agenda is to actually keep money) don’t buy the food! Let the consumers who want to buy their product spend the money. The point I was making is that when we have a product we consume regularly, be it food, books, or school supplies, we tend to ignore the political consequences and where our money goes. It’s obvious that the people who want to keep Chick-Fil-A (like myself) consume it enough times to not really care where their money goes, akin to someone who orders their books off of Amazon.

    As well, yes, $3 million donated over 7 years is a minuscule amount, especially for a company that grosses anywhere from $3-4 BILLION per year (or around $21-28 billion over the span of 7 years). And much more of that revenue is going to creating stable homes for foster children and scholarship opportunities to underprivileged youth.

    If you are so concerned with the cause, why don’t you try working with Aramark to have Chick-Fil-A do some sort of fundraiser for LGBTQ homeless youth, awareness, or other pertinent issues that affect plenty of New York citizens?

  2. Sarah F. says

    @Matt Hayes – you point out that Africa, the Middle East, parts of Asia and Latin America are homophobic. Well NYU has no problem with opening up campuses there so what makes you think the administration would care about Chik-Fil-A and their “homophobic chicken” at home? Should NYU Abu Dhabi be shut down because the Middle East is one of the most homophobic parts of the world? Should NYU stop having shuttle buses to Bed Bath & Beyond during Welcome Week because they support anti-gay causes too? Perhaps we should stop using Post-Its on campus because as Justin Epstein points out, they’re against gay marriage too? The reality is there are many corporations who donate money to causes someone may not like.

  3. Matt Hayes says

    Justin, you can continue eating chickfila to your heart’s content. If this was jut a random chickfila on W4th or something, this wouldn’t be a big deal at all. But our money goes towards keeping chickfila here, which is something we don’t have a choice in. Someone can choose not to use post its, or use post its, or amazon or whatever, but by coming to NYU you’re giving money to Chickfila, whether you like it or not. As a student, it’s Hillary’s right to petition that fact, and mine and anyone else’s right to sign. You might not agree, but you don’t have to sign. No one’s making you.

    I understand that 3 million is a small number compared to the company’s total income. But it is THREE. MILLION. DOLLARS. You can do a lot with that much money, and the fact that they give any money at all to anti-gay groups is the real issue. Don’t sign if you don’t want to, but don’t act like this petition is ridiculous or completely out of line.

    And Sarah, most of the NYU abroad sites are in places where homosexuality itself is legal, if not gay marriage. Accra and Abu Dhabi are the only places where homosexuality is even really an issue. However, NYU Abu Dhabi was paid for in full by the United Arab Emirates, not that that matters. At most, the university is buying land and providing opportunities for students to see other countries. The comparison between a country and a stupid fast food restaurant is ridiculous. Are you even being serious? I don’t see how the two could even compare.

    And like I said, we make choices to consume products. As an individual, if I decide to not use post its, that’s my choice. But if NYU took a chunk of my tuition or housing or meal plan or whatever other chunk of money I give them and put it in an account solely for the purpose of buying a product with widely available alternatives from a company with a terrible history of disrespecting, or supporting hate groups aimed at ANY demographic, I would be pissed.

    It’s not the fact that it exists, it’s the fact it’s on campus. Understand?

  4. Justin Epstein says

    Again, Matt, you seem to be ignoring what I am saying. Debate and conversation exists to reach a solution. I have provided you with one. You have ignored it. I’m done here.

  5. Cindy Goldberg says

    She’s claiming that Chick Fil A is committing human rights offenses? Clearly this girl has too much time on her hands. Take a look at the world outside of your freshman dining hall if you really want to take a stand against oppression.

  6. Cindy Goldberg says

    Also, nowhere in this article does she discuss how these alleged ‘anti-gay’ organizations are using this money to be ‘anti-gay’. Can anyone provide evidence?

  7. Rocky Lore says

    If liberals really did care about gay rights, they wouldn’t also be defending the radical Muslim groups during their ‘peace rallies.”