In New Orleans, we don’t just find strength and inspiration in our diversity—we’re built by it. Locals encompassing a wide range of cultures, traditions, experiences and identities come together to create the vibrant, eclectic and storied atmosphere we’re known for today.
Here, queer people can live, work, and play exactly as they are, while citywide initiatives like the Mayor’s LGBTQ+ Taskforce and organizations like the Gulf South LGBTQ Chamber of Commerce ensure equity continues on all fronts, for the long term.
In fact, our city has become a shining example of what inclusivity should look like because of our commitment to championing freedom and safety for marginalized communities. We even have a perfect score on the Human Rights Campaign’s MEI Scorecard, which measures queer inclusivity based on factors such as municipal services, protective laws and LGBTQ leadership. Everything from our history to our businesses and bars is a testament to the fundamental and lasting impact our queer community has made on our collective culture.
When you see our Everyone’s Welcome Here sticker displayed in a storefront, you know you’re among friends. This colorful badge – newly updated to represent queer people of color and transgender and gender-nonconforming people – means that a business has joined our citywide initiative to embrace people of all experiences and identities.
What better way to show how welcoming our city is than with a sign that says just that? Putting our Everyone’s Welcome Here sticker in your storefront won’t just change the way people see your business. It’ll change the way people see and experience our city.
Any business can receive a complimentary sticker packet by viewing the training video and taking our pledge to promote an inclusive & diverse economic environment. Both LGBTQ-owned and allied businesses are welcome to take the pledge.
There is no cost for being part of this program. If your business is interested in participating and receiving a sticker packet, please complete the following form to take the pledge and receive the training video:
*note, after filling out the form, you'll receive an email from New Orleans & Company (firstname.lastname@example.org) with a link to the training video. You must click the link to, and watch, the video in the email to be eligible for an Everyone's Welcome Here sticker.
You don’t have to wonder how you can support LGBTQ businesses in the Greater New Orleans region. The Gulf South LGBTQ Chamber of Commerce is a network of queer-owned and allied businesses that work together to foster a more inclusive, more visible professional ecosystem. Use their directory to find LGBTQ-owned businesses, meet Chamber members, and discover how LGBTQ businesses impact and improve our city in this handy guide.
At a time when legislative attacks against LGBTQ people are becoming increasingly common, organizations like Forum for Equality are organizing, mobilizing, and making positive change. This grassroots organization has been advancing LGBTQ civil rights at regional and state government levels since 1989, in addition to educating and engaging local communities.
Did you know that 1 in 3 transgender and gender non-conforming people in Louisiana reported experiencing homelessness in their lifetime? House of Tulip was formed in response to this reality and provides zero-barrier housing to TGNC, as well as connects community members to gender-affirming services.
If you notice anti-LGBTQ laws being discussed or passed in state legislatures, you may ask yourself if boycotting a destination within that city is helpful in getting those laws to change. Our position, as well as IGLTAs, is that these types of boycotts will likely do more harm to local communities than the state government as a whole. Instead, we invite you to visit those municipalities that are fighting for LGBTQ inclusion, while also donating to groups fighting back against those laws like the ACLU, Louisiana Trans Advocates, and HRC NOLA.
We turn commitment into action. At Beloved Community, our mission is to build sustainable change. We do so by supporting regions to further their collaborative journey for racial and economic equity, and by centering our most marginalized populations as we advance towards the beloved community.
This looks like empowering teams to drive change through equity audits and thought partnership; guiding leaders through capacity-building sessions + equity work plans; and curating customized frameworks for operationalizing equity commitments.
“Laissez le bon temps rouler. It’s in everything we do in New Orleans. Celebration of life and diversity. Our members and businesses in the regional LGBTQ community invite you join us in advancing a society of tolerance and diversity in business as in life.” — Andrea Romero, President, Gulf South LGBTQ Chamber of Commerce
“New Orleans is one of the first places in the entire south where it has become and continues to be safe to be your authentic self, and one of the first places to possess any form of service specifically for LGBT people…those businesses that serve our community tend to do so not only as a place of business, but a place of sanctuary and muster. We possess real allies here—folks that recognize us as equals and not just an income source or some easy political lever. That’s not something we have been able to take for granted, and it’s once again something we increasingly can’t take for granted in many places in this sector of our country.” — Michael Fletcher, Treasurer, LGBT Community Center of New Orleans