Chick-Fil-A restaurant will not open on the Rider University campus

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Chick Fil-A restaurant facade
Chick Fil-A restaurant facade
Restaurants corporate values have not sufficiently progressed

Rider University in Lawrenceville, NJ sent a survey to students during the spring semester, asking them which restaurants they would like to see on campus. But when it became clear that Chick-Fil-A was the students’ first choice, the college decided to disregard the results.

The school in an email sent November 1, 2018 said it will not bring Chick-Fil-A to campus because “their corporate values have not sufficiently progressed enough to align with those of Rider.” The school went on to clarify that the decision was in an effort to “promote… inclusion for all people. While Chick-Fil-A is among other restaurants preferenced by Rider students, there are members of the community (faculty, staff, and students) who strongly opposed the option as well.”

Julia Pickett, a junior political science major and president of Rider’s Young Americans for Liberty chapter, reacted to the college’s decision saying, “I don’t think it is fair. However, because Rider is a private college, ultimately the decision is their own.” With regard to whether Chick-Fil-A’s corporate values should have been the deciding factor, Pickett said to the online venue Campus Reform, “they sell chicken, so as far as I am concerned that should be the focus. If people didn’t want to buy their food then they don’t have to.”

“I think that the administration of Rider felt that having Chick-Fil-A on campus would cause unwanted controversy and felt that the easiest fix was to find another restaurant. I wish they would be honest about it though instead of trying to cover it as a deep offense to the school.”

“It is important to me and to the University that all voices are heard,” Rider Assistant Vice President of Student Affairs Jan Friedman-Krupnick said in an interview. “There are a number of factors that contribute to a campus’ decision to invite a retail partner on campus. While Chick-fil-A is among other restaurants preferenced by Rider students, there are members of the community (faculty, staff, and students) who strongly opposed the option as well.”

“In all of our campus decisions, we carefully weigh benefits, risks and voices representative of all of our campus constituents,” Friedman-Krupnick added.

Meanwhile, in Maryland, at Johns Hopkins University the Student Government Association has demanded the university consider “non-discriminatory alternatives” to Chick-fil-A. The decision is based on student beliefs that the chain’s support of traditional marriage is a “microaggression.”

Thus far there are no plans to bring Chick-fil-A to John Hopkins campus. But the Student Government Association there issued preliminary demand that the university seek “non-discriminatory” vendors in a new multi-use facility currently under construction. The SGA approved the resolution, 18-8, to indefinitely suspend any discussion about opening a new location of Chick-Fil-A. They said that students, staff and “other visitors who are members of the LGBT community should not be subjected to microaggression on campus.