Chick-fil-A employees broke the company’s ban on working Sundays in the aftermath of the mass shooting in Orlando.
Employees at several local Chick-fil-A restaurants showed up to work on Sunday, hours after the deadly attack at a gay nightclub that killed 49 people and injured 53 others, to prepare meals and give them out to people waiting in line to donate blood, Fox 5 Atlanta reports.
A Chick-fil-A restaurant in Lee Vista, Florida posted photos to Facebook of their employees working and wrote:
“A few members of our awesome team decided to go into work on a Sunday and make some food for people waiting in line to donate blood. We love our city and love the people in our community. #prayfororlando“
At least one other Chick-fil-A restaurant – located at University Boulevard and Rouse Road – was also giving out free food and beverages to blood donors on Sunday.
The restaurant wrote on Facebook, “Our restaurant, along with a couple of others in the area, simply responded just like numerous other Orlando businesses and residents have done – we came together as a community to lift those in need.”
Both restaurants received an outpouring of support from customers for their messages and offers of free food.
“Thank you for the outpouring of love for the people of Orlando in light of the horrible terror experienced Sunday morning,” one customer wrote on Chick-fil-A’s Facebook page.
By working on Sunday, the Chick-fil-A restaurants broke a company policy against opening on Sunday that has been in place since 1946. The restaurants alsoshowed implicit support for the LGBT community, which Chick-fil-A has offended in the past.
Dan Cathy, the son of the late Chick-fil-A founder S. Truett Cathy, set off a fury among gay rights supporters in 2012 when he told the Baptist Press in 2012 that the company was “guilty as charged” for backing “the biblical definition of a family.” Following Cathy’s remarks, reports emerged detailing Chick-fil-A’s many charitable donations to anti-gay marriage organizations.
These days, Chick-fil-A is warning all of its franchisees against speaking out publicly or getting involved in anything that could blur the line between their private beliefs and their public roles as extensions of the Chick-fil-A brand.