THE HUMAN RIGHTS CAMPAIGN FOR BUZZFLASH AT TRUTHOUT
New data indicates Chick-fil-A's image with consumers has dropped dramatically since the company's president proudly embraced the organization's anti-LGBT donations. The new numbers come as former Governor Mike Huckabee and the National Organization for Marriage (NOM) attempt to make today a national "Eat at Chick-fil-A" day.
According to YouGov's BrandIndex, Chick-fil-A's brand perception among consumers has dropped by more than 20 points since Dan Cathy replied "guilty as charged" when asked about Chick-fil-A's donations to groups that work to demonize and harm LGBT people. The drop is noticeable across the country - even in the South, a stronghold for the fast food chain.
"Americans by and large are not comfortable with Chick-fil-A's anti-LGBT donations, and the company's proud embrace of these discriminatory practices is taking a deserved toll on its image," said HRC Vice President of Communications Fred Sainz. "Chick-fil-A supports organizations that demonize LGBT people on a regular basis - and in addition to being morally wrong, it's also bad for business. In an era when corporations are supporting equality at unprecedented levels, Chick-fil-A is on the decidedly wrong side of history."
BrandIndex regularly surveys consumers on six factors central to a company's brand - quality, impression, value, reputation, satisfaction and willingness to recommend. Prior to Dan Cathy's anti-LGBT remarks on July 16, Chick-fil-A's brand perception stood at 65 - nearly 20 points above the national average for fast food restaurants. Less than two weeks later, by July 25, that number stood at 39. In the South, Chick-fil-A experienced an image perception drop from 80 to 44; in the Northeast those numbers went from 76 to 35.
Chick-fil-A's anti-LGBT history most recently resurfaced several weeks ago, when company president Dan Cathy replied "guilty as charged" when asked about his organization's donations to groups that actively lie about LGBT people. He later said that those who support marriage equality are "inviting God's judgment on our nation." Some of the anti-LGBT organizations benefiting from Chick-fil-A's money include Focus on the Family, the Fellowship of Christian Athletes, and the Family Research Council - identified as a hate group by the Southern Poverty Law Center.
The Human Rights Campaign is America's largest civil rights organization working to achieve lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender equality. By inspiring and engaging all Americans, HRC strives to end discrimination against LGBT citizens and realize a nation that achieves fundamental fairness and equality for all.