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IGLTA eNewsletter

Photo memories from #IGLTA2015

A big thank you to all of the sponsors, partners, attendees and volunteers who contributed to this year's hugely successful Annual Global Convention in Los Angeles! We'll be adding more photos to our Facebook albums over the next week, but you can already see a great sampling. Please tag and share! You'll also be able to order prints via Richard Luu Photography by using the access code iglta2015 in his online client gallery. Photos for the IGLTA Foundation event at the Montage Beverly Hills are available via Flytographer. And finally, it's time to mark your calendars for our 33rd Annual Global Convention in Cape Town, South Africa, 14-16 April 2016!

14 Apr 2015 15:48:26 CDT

IGLTA announces new executive committees

New executive committees for both the IGLTA board and the IGLTA Foundation board were determined during the board meetings held in conjunction with our Annual Global Convention in Los Angeles. For 2015-2016, IGLTA will be led by Dan Melesurgo, Chair; Juan Julia, Vice Chair; Ed Salvato, Treasurer; and Chris Stanley, Secretary. Tanya Churchmuch retains the position of Past Chair. The IGLTA Foundation will be led by Tony Tenicela, Chair; Gary Murakami, Vice Chair; Tom Nichols, Treasurer; and Theresa Belpulsi, Secretary.

14 Apr 2015 15:48:26 CDT

Prop. 8 shame finally diminishing as LGBT tourism officially recognizes LA

For years Los Angeles has been a pariah to the national LGBT community because California passed a law banning same-sex marriage, Proposition 8, in 2008. In 2013, however, the U.S. Supreme Court dismissed an appeal that sought to have the proposition upheld, and government-recognized same-sex nuptials returned en masse.

14 Apr 2015 15:48:26 CDT

Democrats say federal LGBT protections needed

Congressional Democrats said recently they'll push for federal legislation to prevent discrimination against gays and lesbians in states that lack broad non-discrimination laws. "It's time for Congress to weigh in on what is happening across the country," said Rep. Steve Israel of New York, who heads the House Democratic Policy and Communications Committee.

14 Apr 2015 15:48:26 CDT

Asia's LGBT people migrate to escape violence at home

Long before Joe Wong had his breasts and uterus surgically removed, he was Joleen, who once used an entire roll of brown duct tape to flatten her chest in an effort to look less feminine at her new secondary school in Singapore. A close relative, angered by Joleen's clumsy and obvious attempt to bind her breasts, struck her on the head, pulled up her shirt, and tore off the tape, ripping off bits of skin in the process

14 Apr 2015 15:48:26 CDT

Uganda's LGBT community is fighting back with information

Last year, a group of Ugandans invited submissions for Bombastic, a new LGBT magazine they hoped to launch. According to the founders, they received 10,000. Story after story rushed in — some conveying hope, depression, isolation; some telling disturbing tales of exorcisms or conversion therapy or "corrective" rape.

14 Apr 2015 15:48:26 CDT

Obama calls for end to LGBT conversion therapy

U.S. President Barack Obama called recently for an end to psychiatric therapies that seek to change the sexual orientation of gay, lesbian and transgender youth, the White House said. The White House statement, written by senior adviser Valerie Jarrett, is in response to a petition calling for Obama to back a law to ban conversion therapy, which is supported by some socially conservative organizations and religious doctors.

14 Apr 2015 15:48:26 CDT

Cuba's emerging LGBT nightlife comes into focus

Proving true to the complexities of Cuba’s social and political climates, LGBT nightlife on the island is no less multifaceted. Regular gay-oriented parties, which started to pop up a little more than five years ago, are held in state-run clubs, but, technically listed as "audio-visual projects," are not themselves state-run.

14 Apr 2015 15:48:26 CDT

Obama isn't quiet about LGBT rights, even in Jamaica trip

Against a backdrop of LGBT youth literally living in storm drains and a gay man stoned to death in the street, President Obama used his trip to Jamaica to hail the example of a young lesbian activist. While in Kingston at the University of the West Indies for a town hall with young people, Obama used his opening remarks to praise two people who he said are "an example of what is possible, even in the most difficult of circumstances."

14 Apr 2015 15:48:26 CDT

The rise of Brazil's Guardians of the Altar

A group of hard-faced young men marched military style through a cheering crowd, giving straight-armed salutes. "Thank the Lord, we are here today ready for battle, and determined to serve you — We are Gladiators of the Altar," they declared, in a video that went viral in February. The video wasn't a clip from an army training exercise or propaganda for some sort of militia.

14 Apr 2015 15:48:26 CDT

Same-sex marriage law boosts LGBT business

Hawaii lawmakers legalized same-sex marriages in December 2013, and that legislation has since helped both in-state operators and mainland-based travel agents and wholesalers boost LGBT business in the Aloha State. "Our business in that market has increased somewhere between 20 percent to 30 percent," said Carolee Higashino, the owner of Purple Orchid Wedding, a Hawaii-based wedding planner specializing in same-sex marriages.

14 Apr 2015 15:48:26 CDT

Mobile devices now generate 25 percent of all digital travel transactions in the US

According to the latest report from first quarter this year, mobile commerce (including tablets) is growing like weeds, everywhere. Mobile is now 29 percent of e-commerce transactions in the U.S. and 34 percent globally. By the end of 2015, mobile share is forecast to reach 33 percent in the U.S. and 40 percent globally. Travel is one of the early adopter sectors in mobile e-commerce, and it is the third largest sector in U.S., according to Criteo data.

14 Apr 2015 15:48:26 CDT

Airbnb, Uber causing a seismic shift in business travel

From paper maps to electronic GPS, from phone reservations to mobile apps, travel has evolved in more ways than one. The biggest change in recent years has been the rapid rise of the sharing economy and how it is changing the way we travel for business. U.S. business travel spending is projected to top $310 billion this year. This comes after a record-spending year of $292 billion in 2014 — even in the face of external issues in foreign economies in Europe, Russia and Asia. Sharing economy companies such as Airbnb and Uber are taking advantage of the increase in business travelers.

14 Apr 2015 15:48:26 CDT