Report: Michigan’s Gay Marriage Ban is Hurting Tourism
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There are few places in the United States with scenery as beautiful as what you can find in Michigan, but a market research firm believes the state’s ban on gay marriage is having a negative impact on the tourism industry.
According to Emily Lawler of MLive.com, San Francisco-based Community Marketing, Inc. president Thomas Roth spoke last week at the Pure Michigan Governor's Conference on Tourism about a recent survey his company conducted and its findings about the state.
CMI surveyed 3,503 members of the LGBT community regarding how and where they prefer to travel, and there were no Michigan destinations ranked in the top 20 for gay, lesbian and bisexual men and women, according to Lawler.
Roth told the audience in attendance at Pure Michigan Governor's Conference, “So it's a double-edged sword because on one hand you're not getting that (wedding) business. On the other hand gays and lesbians are probably not coming here for holiday or vacation as much as they would because it's not an inclusive state when [there are] 37 other choices, right?”
When he mentioned 37 other choices, Roth is referencing the states with marriage equality. He believes that the laws against gay marriage and the perceived intolerance have also led LGBT travelers to avoid the state when choosing places to vacation.
The states that have embraced marriage equality have seen booms from the LGBT demographics, according to Roth, and he spoke at the Governor's Conference to persuade Michigan hotels to become more supportive to LGBT visitors.
As an additional service to the LGBT community, CMI has compiled a list of the hotels in Michigan that have been approved by the Travel Advocacy Group. The full list can be found here.
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