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IGLTA Becomes First Gay Organization in World Tourism Organization

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Global LGBT Travel Association Approved as Affiliate Member by UNWTO Executive Council

The International Gay and Lesbian Travel Association was one of 14 Affiliate Members approved for admission in the World Tourism Organization on 26 October, a first for an LGBT organization. The decision was made during the 89th session of the UNWTO executive council. Twenty-six of the 31 states comprising the executive council were in attendance, a diverse group that includes Brazil, France, Egypt, India, Iran, South Africa, and the Russian Federation.

UNWTO is a specialized agency of the United ?Nations and the leading international organization in the field of tourism, serving as a ?global forum for policy issues and a practical tourism resource.? IGLTA is the leading global organization dedicated to connecting businesses in the LGBT tourism industry.

“Partnering with such a world-renowned organization positions IGLTA and its membership at the forefront of global tourism,” IGLTA President/CEO John Tanzella said. “It’s a testament to the progress of our association and its incredible members that IGLTA now has impact far beyond the LGBT travel niche. We are extremely pleased.”

UNWTO plays a central role in promoting the developmentof responsible and universally accessible tourism. The organization unites 161 member states and territories and more than 400 Affiliate Members from the private sector. Among the new members joining alongside IGLTA were the University of Bologna (Italy), Promitur (Cape Verde) and Dar Al-Diafa for Hospitality and Tourism Education Consultancy (Jordan).

“We are delighted that IGLTA has joined forces with UNWTO. We are certain that the relationship will be mutually beneficial as we exchange information on trends in world tourism and IGLTA helps to orientate UNWTO Affiliate Members in the world of LGBT travel,” said UNWTO Director of Affiliate Members, Javier Blanco. “Our two organizations share the values of sustainable, competitive travel and respect for UNWTO Global Code of Ethics for Tourism and this provides an ideal framework for future collaboration.”

About IGLTA: Founded with 25 members in 1983, IGLTA has now grown to include more than 2,200 member businesses in 84 countries. Membership consists of accommodations, airlines, tour operators, travel agents, destinations, media and other key players in global tourism. For more on IGLTA, please visit www.lgbt.travel or www.facebook.com/IGLTA. For information on our 28th annual global convention in Fort Lauderdale, Fla., 10-15 May, 2011, visit www.igltaconvention.org.

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