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Tags: chick-fil-a | new york | sundays | religion | religious freedom

N.Y. Dems Target Chick-fil-A's Sundays Off Policy in Thruway Bill

By    |   Wednesday, 20 December 2023 11:58 AM EST

New York Democrat lawmakers are targeting fast food giant Chick-fil-A, which is closed on Sundays, with legislation that mandates restaurants located in rest stops on the state Thruway or operated by the Port Authority in New York and New Jersey to remain open seven days a week. 

"Not only does Chick-fil-A have a long shameful history of opposing LGBTQ rights, it simply makes no sense for them to be a provider of food services in busy travel plazas," Assemblyman Tony Simone, D-Manhattan, the lawmaker sponsoring the legislation, said in a statement, Syracuse's Spectrum News reported. "A company, that by policy, is closed on one of the busiest travel days of the week should not be the company that travelers have to rely on for food services."

Chick-fil-A has had a company policy since first opening in 1946 that the restaurants would be closed on Sundays to allow operators and team members "to enjoy a day of rest, be with their families and loved ones, and worship if they choose."

With the remodel of the 27 rest stops on the Thruway, new vendors have moved into travel plazas, including Chick-fil-A, which is occupying 10 of the 27 restaurant spaces. 

The proposed legislation declares there is "nothing objectionable" about a fast food restaurant closing on a particular day, "service areas dedicated to travelers is an inappropriate location for such a restaurant."

"Publicly owned service areas should use their space to maximally benefit the public," the bill continues. "Allowing for retail space to go unused one-seventh of the week or more is a disservice and unnecessary inconvenience to travelers who rely on these service areas."

A Thruway spokesperson said in a statement that part of its 33-year contract to manage the plazas, Applegreen, which operates the facilities, must offer at least one hot and one cold food option that is available 24 hours a day at all locations.

However, Applegreen factored Chick-fil-A's Sunday-off policy into its plan for tenants. 

"When the project is complete, Chick-fil-A will operate in less than half of the service areas on the Thruway — all of which have at least one other food concept and a convenience store open seven days a week with up to three additional concepts and a convenience store at the largest and highest volume locations," the statement said.

Meanwhile, Hudson Valley Democrat State Sen. Michelle Hinchey, who is sponsoring the bill in her chamber, said it is important to "ensure that [rest stops] remain reliable hubs, especially on the busiest travel days of the year. If one of the main food options closes for just one day, it not only inconveniences travelers but also puts a significant strain on the food spots that are open, leading to longer wait times."

Both houses of the legislature are controlled by Democrat supermajorities, and if the legislation passes, it will head to the desk of Gov. Kathy Hochul, also a Democrat, for approval or veto.

Sandy Fitzgerald

Sandy Fitzgerald has more than three decades in journalism and serves as a general assignment writer for Newsmax covering news, media, and politics. 

© 2024 Newsmax. All rights reserved.


US
New York Democrat lawmakers are targeting fast food giant Chick-fil-A, which is closed on Sundays, with legislation that mandates restaurants located in rest stops on the state Thruway or operated by the Port Authority in New York and New Jersey to remain open.
chick-fil-a, new york, sundays, religion, religious freedom
488
2023-58-20
Wednesday, 20 December 2023 11:58 AM
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