Students at North Carolina's Elon University this week became the latest to push back against Chick-fil-A and its anti-gay stance. The student government voted 35-11 to ask the school's food vendor, Aramark, to find another restaurant to take the fast food chicken chain's place, the Times-News reports.
Chick-fil-A was at the center of a very public controversy this summer after its president and COO, Dan Cathy, openly declared his opposition to LGBT rights -- saying legalizing same-sex marriage was like "shaking a fist" at God -- and stood by the company's millions of dollars in donations to anti-gay groups. In the wake of the controversy, Cathy reportedly held a "diversity" meeting with campus leaders in Atlanta back in August.
While broader attention to Chick-fil-A seems to have subsided, college students have continued a push on several college campuses to give Chick-fil-A the boot. Two other colleges in North Carolina have ended their relationship with the company (even after North Carolina voters approved a constitutional amendment banning same-sex marriage earlier this year).
St. Mary's College in Maryland ended its relationship with Chick-fil-A over a year ago. And Davidson College decided to refrain from serving Chick-fil-A at a school sponsored event after students started a petition.
Yet despite the national outcry and dozens of petitions calling for the removal of Chick-fil-A restaurants from college campuses, very few schools have taken any action to kick out the chicken joints.
In July, New York City Council Speaker Christine Quinn wrote a letter to New York University President John Sexton requesting Chick-fil-A be removed from the school's campus in Manhattan. And even though NYU students have been speaking out against Chick-fil-A for some time, student leaders so far have resisted booting New York City's only Chick-fil-A location.
Duke University's on-campus location is closing in 2013, but due to campus renovations rather than student protests. Rick Johnson, associate vice president of housing and dining, told the Duke Chronicle he received some emails over the summer calling for the university to cut ties with Chick-fil-A. "I told them it’s a moot point because their contract is up at the end of the year," Johnson said. "That seemed to satisfy them."
At Elon, a private college, the school president and other senior administrators will have the final say on whether Chick-fil-A stays on campus.