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Another Chick-fil-A ban? Buffalo airport falls under fire for banning restaurant

In this Oct. 30, 2018 file photo, a Chick-fil-A location is set to open in downtown Athens, Ga.
In this Oct. 30, 2018, file photo, new Chick-fil-A signage is shown in downtown, Athens, Ga. Rider University removed the restaurant from a survey asking students what restaurants they would like on campus, "based on the company's record widely perceived to be in opposition to the LGBTQ community." The fast-food chain was included in previous surveys. Chick-fil-A says it has "no policy of discrimination against any group."
Joshua L. Jones, Athens Banner-Herald

SALT LAKE CITY — Chick-fil-A has been banned by another airport.

The Niagara Frontier Transportation Authority is under fire from a top civil rights official after reports that the NFTA ruled against allowing a Chick-fil-A in the Buffalo Niagara International Airport, WIVB reports.

Peter Kirsanow, who works for the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights, has accused the NFTA of discriminating against Chick-fil-A for religious reasons.

Flashback: Last week, the NFTA announced that Chick-Fil-A had been tentatively selected a choice for one of the concession stands at the Buffalo-Niagara airport.

  • However, New York state Assemblyman Sean Ryan of Buffalo complained about the decision, saying the NFTA was showing it was against the LGBT community, USA Today reported.
  • "I am a bit disappointed with the NFTA. They wanted to talk about how they could have them to stay there. But that is really not allowed under our rules,” Ryan said, according to WIVB.
  • Ryan said the decision was based on the company’s “long history of supporting and funding anti-LGBTQ organizations.”

Now: “I applaud the decision that has been made to remove Chick-fil-A from plans from the Buffalo Niagara International Airport. Thank you to everyone who reached out to share their opinion,” Ryan tweeted.

Yes, but: Kirsanow wrote a letter to the NFTA Chair Sister Denise Roche that said there’s no evidence Chick-fil-A has discriminated against anyone based on sexual orientation. The main issue when it comes to the LGBT community comes from the Chick-fil-a Foundation, which supports the traditional marriage of a man and woman, according to ThinkProgress.

Chick-fil-a released a statement about the issue.

  • “Recent coverage about Chick-fil-A continues to drive an inaccurate narrative about our brand," the company said in a statement. "We want to make it clear that our sole focus is on providing delicious food and welcoming everyone — not being a part of a national political conversation. We do not have a political or social agenda. More than 145,000 people from different backgrounds and beliefs represent the Chick-fil-A brand. We embrace all people, regardless of religion, race, gender, ethnicity, sexual orientation or gender identity.“

Kirsanow said Chick-fil-A would “likely sue the NFTA's members in their official and personal capacities” if the airport doesn’t take back its ban on Chick-fil-A.

Flashback: Last week, the San Antonio City Council declined to approve plans from Chick-fil-A to open a restaurant in a local airport because of the company’s stance on LGBTQ issues, The Houston Chronicle reports.