Department of Tourism Unveils Inclusive Tourism Development Plans Under Marcos Administration, Launches Tourism Pride Summit

Secretary Christina Garcia Frasco of the Department of Tourism (DOT) revealed the Marcos Administration’s comprehensive plans for inclusive tourism development, with a special focus on positioning the Philippines as one of Asia’s most LGBTQIA+ friendly destinations. The announcement was made during her Keynote Address at the Philippine Financial & Inter-Industry (PFIP) Pride Summit 2023.

Tourism Pride Summit

Secretary Frasco highlighted the enormous potential for LGBTQIA+ tourism in the Philippines, given the community’s rapid growth globally, with over 35 million travelers. The DOT, under Secretary Frasco’s leadership, will host the first-ever Tourism Pride Summit in September in collaboration with the PFIP.

Last month, the DOT welcomed executives from the PFIP for a courtesy visit, solidifying the partnership for the Tourism Pride Summit during tourism month.

Commitment to Inclusive Tourism

In addition to the summit, the DOT has prioritized LGBTQIA+ tourism-related initiatives under the Office of Special Concerns of the Office of the Secretary. The Department is committed to ensuring its employees receive training on relevant topics, including Sexual Orientation, Gender Identity, and Sex Characteristics (SOGIESC) awareness and the basics of Gender and Development (GAD).

Secretary Frasco expressed her pride in the LGBTQIA+ community’s significant representation across the tourism value chain in the Philippines. She acknowledged their contributions from personnel and accommodation sectors to frontline, managerial, supervisory, and upper echelons of the tourism industry.

Grassroots Recognition and Initiatives

Drawing on her experience as the former Mayor of Liloan in Cebu, Secretary Frasco shared her efforts to give the local LGBTQ+ community a voice. By organizing and federating the Liloan LGBTQ, it became the first Municipality in Cebu to have a fully federated LGBT federation in all barangays.

“I share this story to assure you that the work you have been doing for the past 10 years has resulted in grassroots recognition and implementation of the necessity for LGBTQ+ equality, equity, and recognition. It is not a mere aspiration but is happening and succeeding,” said Secretary Frasco.

Love for Country and Support

Secretary Frasco commended PFIP for its ten-year existence and expressed her eagerness to partner with the organization to make the Philippines one of the most LGBTQIA+ friendly places in Asia. She emphasized the alignment of PFIP’s values with the Filipino people’s love of country.

To further support the LGBTQIA+ community, Secretary Frasco pledged a personal donation of PhP 500,000 from herself and her husband, House Deputy Speaker Duke Frasco, to support PFIP’s educational scholarships for underprivileged students within the community.

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