Six Ways to Celebrate Pride Month at Your Tourism Business
Blog by Lauren Semple
Campbell River Pride is just around the corner! Here are six ways to celebrate Pride month and make your tourism business more LGBTQ+ inclusive:
- Create a safe and supportive environment for 2SLGBTQIA+ employees by implementing inclusive policies and practices. Business leaders should audit their existing systems and policies regularly, paying special attention to gendered workplace facilities; documents, communications, and marketing language that is unnecessarily gendered; benefits that do not include same-sex and/or gender partners; medical plans that do not cover gender-affirming care; or Employee Assistance Programs which are not LGBTQ+ friendly or inclusive.
- Organize events and activities celebrating 2SLGBTQIA+ culture and history, such as movie screenings, guest speakers, or a 2SLGBTQIA-focused social event. Many Pride societies, like the North Island Pride Society here in Campbell River, are open to event partners and sponsors or even endorsing safe and inclusive events as part of the annual Pride celebrations.
- Use your platforms, like social media and newsletters, to raise awareness about 2SLGBTQIA+ issues and promote equality and acceptance. Of course, this is best done year-round as an integral part of your social strategy. Still, Pride month and local celebrations offer extra opportunities to speak up as an allied business or community organization.
- Host an LGBTQIA+ training session for staff and leadership or industry partners! Ongoing education is foundational to any inclusion initiative, whether it’s a pre-created course or a custom consultant-delivered workshop. There are many affordable and accessible options available in-person and online that cover a variety of training topics, such as inclusive customer service and LGBTQ+ inclusive leadership. Prepare your team for Campbell River Pride by investing in inclusivity training.
- Donate to your local Pride Society or other 2SLGBTQ+ organizations and causes to make a positive impact! This could be a sponsorship, donation, or proceeds from Pride merch, LGBTQ+ specials or a whole Pride event. “Rainbow-washing” occurs when businesses engage in performative or profit-motivated support of the LGBTQ+ community. Avoid this by ensuring your Pride activities benefit local Pride societies and other 2SLGBTQ+ organizations.
- Pride flags and trans flags can be displayed year-round at your tourism business as part of active LGBTQ+ allyship and inclusion work, but if you have the space – a full window display is a great way to celebrate and support Pride! Members of the arts, culture and heritage sectors could also look into displays, exhibits and presentations that honour and showcase queer history, art, and literature at a local level or beyond.
Click here to learn more about Destination Campbell River’s commitment to 2SLGBTQIA+ inclusion.