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Following AFA
Boycott, McDonald's Exec Leaves Gay Group

Following AFA
Boycott, McDonald's Exec Leaves Gay Group

The antigay American Family Association has ended its five-month boycott against McDonald's after a company executive resigned from a gay and lesbian business group, reports the Chicago Tribune.

The antigay American Family Association has ended its five-month boycott against McDonald's after a company executive resigned from a gay and lesbian business group, reports the Chicago Tribune.

Richard Ellis has stepped down from the board of the National Gay and Lesbian Chamber of Commerce, and the AFA claims it's because of the stress it placed on the Oak Brook, Ill.-based company. The AFA claimed that by participating in the gay chamber, McDonald's wasn't remaining neutral "in the cultural war over homosexuality."

But a McDonald's spokesman says Ellis left the chamber because he recently left his post as vice president of U.S. communications for an executive position at McDonald's in Canada, and the gay chamber is a U.S. association. Though not officially caving to the AFA, a McDonald's spokesman distanced the corporation from the gay group.

"Richard's decision to be a member of the board was a personal decision, not a company decision," Jack Daly, McDonald's global chief communications officer, told the Tribune. Daly added that McDonald's is not a member of the chamber and that the company, which was previously a sponsor of the gay group's fund-raising gala, has no plans to be a sponsor of the event next year.

According to the AFA, McDonald's e-mailed franchise owners with the following message: "It is our policy to not be involved in political and social issues. McDonald's remains neutral on same-sex marriage or any 'homosexual agenda' as defined by the American Family Association."

The AFA's website carried the message "We appreciate the decision by McDonald's to no longer support political activity by homosexual activist organizations. You might want to thank your local McDonald's manager." (Neal Broverman, The Advocate)

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