Chick-fil-A announced on Monday that it will no longer donate to anti-LGBTQ organizations, starting in 2020.
The fast food chain has been criticized heavily for donating to two Christian organizations with long histories of homophobia: the Salvation Army and the Fellowship of Christian Athletes (FCA). In 2018, the Chick-fil-A foundation donated $1.65 million to the FCA and $115,000 to the Salvation Army.
Neither organization will receive money from the company any longer, according to Monday’s statement.
“We made multiyear commitments to both organizations and we fulfilled those obligations in 2018,” a spokesperson said.
Moving forward, Chick-fil-A will focus its charity donations on education, homelessness, and hunger.
Chick-fil-A’s announcement is likely the result of public pressure. The company recently attempted to expand internationally, but its anti-LGBTQ views hindered it. It lost its lease on its first U.K. location due to protests.
“There’s no question we know that, as we go into new markets, we need to be clear about who we are,” President and Chief Operating Officer Tim Tassapoulos told Bisnow on Monday. “There are lots of articles and newscasts about Chick-fil-A, and we thought we needed to be clear about our message.”
But LGBTQ customers shouldn’t get their hopes up too much. This isn’t the first time that the company has promised to cease anti-LGBTQ donations, only to quietly break its promise. Moreover, the company’s anti-LGBTQ history extends beyond its donations. CEO Dan Cathy has also publicly opposed marriage equality, and the chain lacks any inclusivity for LGBTQ employees.
“Chick-Fil-A investors, employees, and customers can greet today’s announcement with cautious optimism, but should remember that similar press statements were previously proven to be empty,” Drew Anderson, director of Campaigns and Rapid Response at GLAAD, said.
“In addition to refraining from financially supporting anti-LGBTQ organizations, Chick-Fil-A still lacks policies to ensure safe workplaces for LGBTQ employees and should unequivocally speak out against the anti-LGBTQ reputation that their brand represents.”