New Orleans Launches New LGBT Welcome Program
NEW ORLEANS – Tourism leaders and partners unveiled its newest program targeted to LGBT travelers. The New Orleans LGBT Hospitality Alliance (NOLHA) Welcoming Sticker Program is geared towards local businesses to highlight that New Orleans is viewed as a welcoming and inclusive place for all visitors. The program was created to build on the city's designation as the country's second "Most Welcoming City" (GayCities 2017) and to show the world that New Orleans is for everyone.
"The City of New Orleans is an inclusive and welcoming place for all people 365 days a year. No special occasion needed, although we love Southern Decadence, Pride, Halloween and Mardi Gras – our city is a major destination and open to our LGBTQ + visitors and family every day and we are proud of that," said mayor LaToya Cantrell.
"New Orleans strives to be a welcoming place for all travelers, and this program allows us to further cement our place as an inclusive tourist destination," said Mark Romig, president and CEO of the New Orleans Tourism Marketing Corporation. "We want everyone who visits our city to have a positive guest experience and to share that experience with everyone."
A recent study showed that nearly two-thirds of Americans (65 percent) believe LGBT inclusive brands and businesses are good for the economy. Additionally, 95 percent of people are looking for openly LGBT-friendly companies, and more than 78 percent of the LGBT community support companies that market and support the LGBT community.
"While some locals may question the need for this type of program, we want everyone to put themselves in the shoes of an LGBT traveler who may not know how truly welcoming New Orleans is," said Dustin Woehrmann CEO and creative director of Communify, a local marketing firm. "We want them to know they are all welcomed in our great city."
Participating businesses are provided with an informational packet which contains a "welcome" sticker decal to be displayed inside the business, the pledge card to be displayed for employees, an overall checklist to ensure their business is more inclusive, and some general information about the LGBT community.