Students at Rider University last spring supported opening a Chick-fil-A on campus, but this fall they were given a new survey with their first choice conspicuously absent.
Rider’s administrators had removed Chick-fil-A as an option after a "difficult assessment of competing interests," in which the universityfound the chicken restaurant was "widely perceived to be in opposition to the LGBTQ+ community." This charge stems from Chick-fil-A’s late founder S. Truett Cathy and his son, CEO Dan Cathy, supporting "the biblical definition of the family unit."
Rider’s president and vice president for student affairs wrote in a statement that it would violate "our values of inclusion" to allow a Chick-fil-A franchise to sell chicken on Rider’s campus.
"The choices in this situation, like in so many others, were imperfect," wrote Rider president Gregory G. Dell’Omo and VP for student affairs Leanna Fenneberg. "They challenged us to reflect on our values and consider what kind of community we want to provide for those who live and learn at Rider University. Ultimately, we decided to lean in the direction of creating a welcoming environment where differences can be appreciated and where each individual can expect to experience dignity and respect."