School meal vendor apologizes for serving chicken and watermelon on the first day of Black History Month

Food vendor, Aramark, is apologizing for having an “insensitive” school lunch menu on the first day of Black History Month. Students at Nyack Middle School in New York were served chicken and waffles with a side of watermelon last Wednesday. All of those menu items are traditionally associated with African American stereotypes.

In a statement to NBC News, the vendor pledged to not repeat the mistake:

“We have apologized for our mistake, are working to determine how it happened and make sure it never happens again,” the statement said. “Our team at that school should have been more thoughtful in its service.”

However, some have pointed out that this same vendor has already made this same mistake before.

  • In 2011 a similar menu was served on Martin Luther King Day at the University of California, Irvine
  • In 2018 its “Black History Month menu” at New York University included cornbread, Kool-Aid, and watermelon-flavored water.

Aramark is a nationwide vendor and works with hundreds of school districts around the country. Despite the aforementioned controversies, they have previously been recognized for their diversity and inclusion efforts.

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