ROYERSFORD, Pa. — A Chick-fil-A franchise in Pennsylvania announced a new policy that bans children under the age of 16 from eating in the restaurant without an adult present.
The Royersford restaurant said it made the decision because of poor behavior on the part of children who had been dropped off at a local bounce park and then walked over to Chick-fil-A.
“We contemplated long and hard before posting this, but decided it was time,” the franchise said in a statement posted to its Facebook page. “While we love being a community restaurant and serving guests of all ages, some issues need to be addressed.”
The restaurant said the children and teens are loud, use explicit language, throw food and trash on tables and the floor, vandalize furniture, steal decorations and disrespect employees.
Reactions to the announcement on Facebook were mixed, with one commenter referencing Chick-fil-A as a Christian-owned company and suggesting the franchise should be assisting youth rather than banning them, Insider reported.
“As a company that is guided by Christian values, I have to wonder if this action is what Christ would have wanted? Where in the Bible does it say, ‘Thou shall turn away youth who clearly need guidance?’”
The franchise explicitly said that it was not blaming parents for the decision, KYW-TV reported.
“Children and teens are learning to navigate the world free from supervision and often push the boundaries,” the franchise said in the post. “We simply can’t let them push those boundaries anymore at our restaurant. We encourage you to talk to your children and ask about behaviors they have seen and perhaps participated in.”
Chick-fil-A, which is based in Atlanta, has more than 2,400 restaurants in 47 states and Washington, D.C.