Something I hear from wedding industry vendors all the time is “I want to be more inclusive! Should I put a rainbow badge on my website?”
Simply put, no, you should not put a rainbow badge on your website. Anyone can have a designer create a small rainbow graphic and market themselves as an LGBTQ+ inclusive business. Instead, you should strive to demonstrate your commitment to the LGBTQ+ community throughout your life and business as a whole. While rainbow badges may be better than nothing in illustrating your wedding industry business is a safe space for LGBTQ+ folks, there are many better inclusive business practices.
5 Inclusive Business Practices Better than Rainbow Badges
Improve equity in your business.
Think about the experience you provide to couples in your wedding business beyond the final product. Do you provide guides, blog posts, or assistance aimed to make the planning process run more smoothly? Remove heteronormative and gendered language to create an equitable client experience for your current and future LGBTQ+ clients. You can learn more about heteronormativity here and gender-neutral language here.
Employ LGBTQ+ consultants, contractors, and collaborate with LGBTQ+ businesses.
Beyond supporting LGBTQ+ business, this also ensures that your output is based on a range of diverse perspectives. Prioritizing intersectionality enables more inclusive business practice. Seeking LGBTQ+ consulting prior to creating advertisements or campaigns ensures that you avoid stereotypes and oversimplifying the LGBTQ+ experience.
Educate yourself on LGBTQ+ history.
Take the time to learn about LGBTQ+ history in your community and globally. Learn about LGBTQ+ figures beyond RuPaul and Ellen DeGeneres – Marsha P Johnson, Sylvia Rivera, Harvey Milk, Gilbert Baker, Larry Kramer, Billie Jean King, and countless others. Learn about the history of same-sex marriage and the struggles faced by LGBTQ+ couples around the world. Several LGBTQ+ documentaries you can watch on Netflix are The Death and Life of Marsha P Johnson, Disclosure, and A Secret Love.
Consume LGBTQ+ art and literature.
Elevate LGBTQ+ artists by purchasing tickets to events and talking about your experience on social media. Several Vancouver-based LGBTQ+ artists you can support are Vancouver Queer Film Festival, Queer Arts Festival, Q Choir, and Vancouver Men’s Chorus. Read books by LGBTQ+ authors and share the books with your friends. Several Vancouver-based LGBTQ+ authors are Ivan Coyote, Amber Dawn, and Danny Ramadan.
Donate to LGBTQ+ causes.
Donate to LGBTQ+ organizations and get involved with causes in your area. Demonstrate that your commitment to the LGBTQ+ community extends beyond an additional demographic for your services. Several Vancouver-based LGBTQ+ organizations are Rainbow Refugee, QMUNITY, and Out In Schools.
Let’s start a community and continue this conversation. Join the Beyond Rainbow Badges group on Facebook.
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