About 1,800 – nearly twice the number last year – marched from Wan Chai to Chater Garden in Central on Sunday, Nov 1, for greater visibility and equal rights.
Organisers say they hope for the event to promote awareness, dignity, and understanding of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgendered people. With this year’s Be Proud Be Yourself theme, they hope for LGBT individuals to have the confidence and courage to come out and be counted.
Aside from the organising coalition comprising Women Coalition of HKSAR, Rainbow of Hong Kong, Midnight Blue, Nutong Xueshe, Gay Harmony, local groups marched alongside lesbian and gay groups from Shanghai, Guangzhou, Chengdu, Beijing; representatives from InterPride, Taiwan LGBT Pride Community and Taipei’s Gingin bookstore; and tourists from Singapore, Philippines, US, Canada, chief director of the Hong Kong Pride Parade committee Connie Chan Man-wai told Fridae.
Notably, the Interbank LGBT Exchange contingent comprising at least 20 gay or gay-friendly members marched for the second consecutive year. Their “Walking with Pride” banner featured the logos of Bank of America Merrill Lynch, Goldman Sachs, J.P. Morgan and UBS. The group is said to comprise representatives from 13 banks including Citi, Credit Suisse, Deutsche Bank, HSBC, Morgan Stanley, Nomura, Societe Generale, Standard Chartered and Wachovia, in addition to the four mentioned earlier.
Chan, who is also the chairperson of the Women’s Coalition in Hong Kong, told Fridae that she hopes that local banks and other companies are motivated by the show of support towards the LGBT community at large and LGBT employees by the foreign banks – many of whom have implemented workplace diversity and anti-discrimination policies.
Following the successful campaign this year to have same-sex couples covered under the Domestic Violence Ordinance, the next item on the agenda is to have sexual orientation covered under Hong Kong’s anti-discrimination legislation. Activists from campaigned for anti-discrimination provisions since the mid 1990s but have continuously faced strong opposition from right-wing Christian groups.
Organisers are appealing for financial support, details and a breakdown of expenses can be found on their website hkpride.net to contact the organisers, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
-it's surprising that this committee consists of mostly lesbians instead of gays. So I guess there are many female supporters. Females, as we know, have high purchasing power of consumer products and services such as: personal hygiene, facial, slimming, massage, personal grooming, hair-dressing, clothes, travel, shoes, etc. It makes business sense for product and service-providers serving them to sell vouchers through this committee. For example, a year's hair-dressing, massage or facial services worth HK$3,000 may be sold for HK$2,688. The committee takes a cut of around 15-20%. The website take orders round the calendar. Any female or male, homosexual or not, may order these vouchers at a discount.
Let's forget about the other people. Let's assume that there are only the 1,800 participants who are supporters of this campaign. Averagely, each would spend at least HK$2,000/m (HK$24k/y) on these products and services. As such, these 1,800 people's spending is at least 1,800 x HK$24k= HK$43.2m/y. Let's assume that this committee can take a commission of ONLY 3% of this aggregate spending. It amounts to HK$1.296m. Yes! HK$1.3m, and we are just assuming that there are only these 1800 supporters, which is very unlikely. This HK$1.3 ALONE would be enough to cover the FULL COST of this event. And it makes sense to sell such vouchers to help lesbians and gays bargain for lower price for those services they commonly purchase regularly.
2) Corporate Sponsorships
How much would a company spend to hire a person to wear its advertisement and walk in the street for half a day? HK$300? Why not make it HK$150, a 50% discount of what would have been a fair price. At the back of each piece of uniform, there should be an advertising space. For example, UBS might want to hire 300 persons to wear a shirt displaying its advertisement. So its advert would appear on 300 shirts. Beside earning more income from the advertising space, it has another advantage, which is to demonstrate that even large MNCs do support LGBT.
3) Overseas Gay Organization Sponsorships
If the above still don't work, then why not seek donation from large LGBT organisations in USA, UK, etc.?
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