SAN JOSE (KPIX 5) — San Jose’s LGBTQ community is protesting the construction of a new Chick-fil-A restaurant inside Mineta San Jose International Airport. Chick-fil-A financially supports groups that oppose LGBTQ rights.
The restaurant was approved more than a year ago as part of a package deal with several other restaurants in a contract with the airport’s food and beverage concessionaire.READ MORE: COVID Vaccines: Marin County Set To Expand Eligibility; Seniors Say Finding Appointments Still A Challenge
But to Ken Yeager, San Jose’s first openly gay councilmember and supervisor, the decision to allow it at the publicly owned airport is a head scratcher.
“This is going to be people’s very first impression of San Jose and what are they going to see? They’re going to see a store known for its anti-gay attitudes and for funding anti-gay groups. I just thought that was so unfortunate, given that we’ve made so much progress in San Jose on LGBTQ rights,” said Yeager.
San Antonio International and Buffalo/Niagra airports have already banned Chick-fil-A over its LGBTQ stance.READ MORE: Stunning Yellow Superbloom Pops Up In Half Moon Bay - 'It's Perfect'
San Jose councilmembers admitted that they somehow overlooked the issue when they approved the restaurant in March of 2018 in a deal that also included Shake Shack, Great American Bagel, Trader Vic’s and a brew pub. Some customers seeing the “Chick-fil-A coming soon!” sign are excited.
“Nice, it will be a nice addition here,” said Morgan McKeown. San Jose already has two Chick-fil-A restaurants. One customer at the Monterey Road location said she wasn’t aware of its stance on LGBTQ issues and may not be back.
“Chick-fil-A is a really good company, but as far as being against gays, it doesn’t work like that in San Jose,” said Elizabeth Gasca.
Because Mineta San Jose is a publicly owned place and the airport has a non-discrimination policy, Yeager wants to put up a rainbow flag near the Chick-fil-A entrance.MORE NEWS: COVID: Santa Clara Supervisors Approve $5/Hour Grocery Worker Hazard Pay
“Whatever we do, we need to make people realize when they come into San Jose, that this is a very welcoming community,” Yeager said. The San Jose City Council approved Yeager’s idea.