Carnival Corporation comes out for same-sex marriages in Bermuda
Bermuda’s government became the first to reverse the legalization of gay marriage in February, when the Domestic Partnership Act was signed into law. It bans same-sex marriage, while allowing same-sex couples similar rights to those of married people under law. According to the government, this creates a “separate-but-equal status under the law” for those to whom it applies. Carnival Corporation, the world’s largest travel-leisure company, disagrees.
Carnival Corp’s share price has risen by 12% over the past year
SOURCE: Yahoo Finance
The new legislation creates a problem for Carnival, in that its subsidiaries Cunard and P&O Cruises are registered in Bermuda. This means that, wherever they may be in the world, they cannot conduct gay marriage ceremonies. Hence, after a month of quiet, the company is protesting the law alongside OUTBermuda. In a statement, the company said:
"Our engagement includes providing OUTBermuda with financial, civic and public relations support, as well as involvement by our company. While we always abide by the laws of the countries we sail to and from, we believe travel and tourism brings people and cultures together in powerful ways. As a result, we believe it is important to stand by the LGBTQ community in Bermuda and its many allies to oppose any actions that restrict travel and tourism."
Carnival will no doubt be aware that “the pink pound” is unusually powerful when it comes to leisure travel. It is estimated that 80% of the American LGBT population have passports against just 40% of the general population. According to Justin Nelson, the president and co-founder of the National LGBT Chamber of Commerce, the economic impact of LGBT travel could add up to as much as $100 billion, worldwide.
OUTBermuda also released a statement in reference to Carnival’s support, saying: "OUTBermuda is proud to work with Carnival Corporation, which includes cruise line brands such as Cunard, P&O Cruises, and Princess Cruises, as the company has a long history of commitment to equality, inclusion, and diversity."
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