A lesbian business owner in Atlanta, Georgia, has invited Chick-fil-A chief Dan Cathy to have dinner with her family.

Marci Alt, who is a married mother of two, is a co-founder of Carma Productions, which produces the Gayborhood app.

A Change.org petition backing her invite has gathered nearly 30,000 signatures so far.

After his statements on Chick-fil-A’s anti-marriage equality values, Ms Alt is asking Mr Cathy to “share a meal with an LGBT family”.

Her petition says: “Chick-fil-A COO [chief operating officer] Dan Cathy himself said that our LGBT-accepting culture suffers from a ‘deprived mind’, that marriage equality is ‘twisted up’, and that making marriage equality legal is ‘inviting God’s judgment’.

“Mr Cathy has his opinion, but he should hear from us and from fellow Christians who disagree – and he should know how his donations are hurting families here in Georgia.

I’m inviting Chick-fil-A COO Dan Cathy and his family to join my family for dinner – at his place or ours – to see that we’re just like any other American family. We care deeply about our faith, our family, our friends and our community, and think there’s room to turn this debate into a dialogue.”

Chick-fil-A has donated millions of dollars to groups which campaign against gay marriage and even attempt to turn gay people straight. The firm has not responded to Ms Alt’s invitation.

GLAAD president Herndon Graddick said in a statement: “Dan Cathy has every right to voice his opinions, but he should meet Marci and her family before he donates additional dollars to hate groups that hurt loving families and everyday LGBT Americans.

“We’ve heard how he believes that gay couples should be denied the chance at happiness that comes with marriage and now it is time that he hears from one of these couples.”