NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio Pushing for Chick-fil-A Boycott

Commuters walk past a Chick-fil-A freestanding franchise in Midtown, New York, October 3, 2015. | (Photo: Reuters/Rashid Umar Abbasi)

As popular fast-food chain Chick-fil-A, known for its public embrace of Christian values, prepares to open a new location in the New York City borough of Queens this fall, a councilman backed by support from Mayor Bill de Blasio is calling for a boycott of the restaurant.

The new Chick-fil-A location, set to open at Queens Center Mall, is too close for comfort for openly gay Councilman Danny Dromm who represents the jurisdiction where the restaurant will be situated. Dromm is calling for an all-out boycott of the fast food joint, NY1 News reports.

In response, Chick-fil-A issued a statement: "The Chick-fil-A culture and service tradition in our restaurants is to treat every person with honor, dignity and respect — regardless of their beliefs, race, creed, sexual orientation or gender. We are a restaurant company comprised of 80,000 individuals who represent different backgrounds and beliefs, and we are all focused on offering great food, service and hospitality."

Despite the restaurant's response to the accusations lobbed by Dromm, the councilman is doubling down in his claims, saying earlier this week that "Chick-fil-A is anti-LGBT," and accused the company of imparting a "strong anti-LGBT message by forcing their employees and volunteers to adhere to a policy that prohibits same-sex love."

De Blasio also spoke out about his distaste for the chicken chain during an unrelated press conference this week, urging New Yorkers not to support the restaurant.

"What the ownership of Chick-fil-A has said is wrong," de Blasio asserted. "I'm certainly not going to patronize them and I wouldn't urge any other New Yorker to patronize them."

The comments to which de Blasio referred were statements by Chick-fil-A president Dan Cathy in 2012 in which Cathy affirmed the company's stance in support of traditional marriage.

Saying that he was "guilty as charged" in his support of traditional marriage, Cathy added, "We know that it might not be popular with everyone, but thank the Lord, we live in a country where we can share our values and operate on biblical principles," he said, according to Forbes.

In 2014, however, Cathy expressed regret for wading into the marriage debate. "Every leader goes through different phases of maturity, growth and development and it helps by [recognizing] the mistakes that you make," Cathy told the Atlanta Journal Constitution. "And you learn from those mistakes. If not, you're just a fool. I'm thankful that I lived through it and I learned a lot from it."

Follow me on Twitter: @kevindonporter

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