Being an inclusive wedding professional does not only mean inclusive of the LGBTQ+ community. There are many ways to be inclusive, and today I want to talk to you about being inclusive of disabled people. Specifically, hard-of-hearing and deaf folks.
To look at me, you might not think anything is wrong. But I'm hearing-impaired. I wear hearing aids in both ears. I hear 9 percent of sounds in one ear and 25 percent of sounds in the other. When I can't hear what people are saying, I feel isolated and alone. It's tiring to continue to ask people to repeat themselves so often I just smile and nod because I'm exhausted.
When people like me attend events, there are ways you can be accomodating. And since you might not know if a hearing-impaired person is attending your event, I recommend you just do these things anyway. Here are five tips to make your event more inclusive of hard-of-hearing or deaf guests.
1 / Mic up your couple for their vows and have a mic for toasts and speeches....
By Kirsten Palladino
With the advent of marriage equality, more wedding pros are opening their business doors to the LGBTQ+ community. As this welcoming happens, it’s important to take note of the level at which businesses are saying yes to equality.
I’ve found that it’s happening on a gradient level, from “willing to take money from gay people” all the way to celebrating the full spectrum of the LGBTQ+ community.
To be fully LGBTQ+ inclusive means that the business has taken at least these measures to embrace all couples:
Working with weddings places you in a special circle of trust with your clients—one that should not be violated. There are certain parameters that you know not to cross with your clients, and privacy is one of them.
Even though you’re being hired to create a magnificent work of art for your client (whether it’s visual, tangible or experiential), never forget that though you retain the rights to the art, you do not have the right to violate your clients’ privacy.
Over the past 10 years in publishing Equally Wed, we have dealt with a not-infrequent amount of couples asking us to remove images that contained their faces or entire Real Wedding features that their photographer or other wedding vendor had submitted to us, never asking the couple for permission.
It’s important to remember that though we have full marriage equality in the United States and in many countries around the globe, we—the LGBTQ+ community—can still be fired from our jobs...
Wedding industry pros are some of the hardest working folks around, especially when they're also doing double duty fighting for social justice and equity in the wedding industry. Enter the Radical Wed Retreat, a workshop for wedding pros happening November 12-15, 2019, in Austin, Texas.
Led by planner and stylist Justine Broughal of Together Events and photographer Jamie Carle, Radical Wed Retreat is geared toward creatives and wedding professionals who seek to or are conquering the social justice space and integrating parts of that into their businesses.
Nourishment from 2018 Radical Wed Retreat, photo...
You’ve taken the leap and invested in a wedding directory listing on Equally Wed, the No. 1 LGBTQ+ wedding website where LGBTQ+ couples come from all over the world to find inspiration for their weddings, engagements and honeymoons and are looking to connect with equality enthusiasts like you. Congratulations! You’ve made a critical decision to get involved with the LGBTQ+ wedding community, to show them you support marriage equality, and to invite LGBTQ+ couples to do business with you. You’re probably thinking “If I build it, they will come,” which is halfway true. You can make the most of your presence on equallywed.com by utilizing the tools we offer to make your wedding directory listing stand out. Let’s talk about the building blocks of an outstanding listing.
Once you’re an approved preferred vendor on Equally Wed, you have full editing abilities of your listing at your directory dashboard to edit it any time of day or night, all on...
As the author of Equally Wed: The Ultimate Guide to Planning Your LGBTQ+ Wedding, the cofounder and editorial director of the Equally Wed website and the course creator at Equally Wed Pro, I recognize perhaps more than some how important words, names, labels and boxes are—whether it’s a matter of usage or avoidance.
Gender is a complex and fluid continuum. One of the reasons there was a need for a book like Equally Wed was to ﬁnally break the mold of the heteronormative terms “bride” and “groom” used in wedding books. Even other books that mention same-sex weddings often call two female-identified people getting married two “brides,” even though that term isn’t universally appropriate in the LGBTQ+ wedding community.
By the same token, not all male-identified marriers want to be referred to as a “groom.” Social constructs are just that: a worldview built by society. People are complex, no matter what our...
By Kirsten Palladino
We’ve seen it over and over. We tell someone we’re gay, trans, queer, bi, nonbinary, etc. and the response is blasé. The person acts like they couldn’t care less … for a few seconds. And then they start talking again. And that’s where the problems start.
They say things like, “Just don’t expect me to go to any rallies.” Or “I don’t judge that lifestyle.” Or “What do I care who you like to have sex with? You’re still my friend/sister/brother/coworker.” And at this point you’re feeling a mix of acceptance and eyes bugging out of your head in complete bewilderment. Is this what being loved feels like? Maybe.
Sometimes the jokes set in at this level or perhaps we’re going to get lucky and not hear those this round.
When I talk to wedding pros around the world, I hear a variety of responses when I tell them who I am and where I work. Here are some of the...
By Cassandra Zetta
In celebrating and educating for the LGBTQ+ community, we must also discuss the struggles and needs trans people have when wedding planning. Through tips shared in this article, we hope to begin to create a more open and safe space for the trans community within the wedding industry. The thoughts and experiences shared below are the reflections of contributing trans community members. Please keep in mind no two people or experiences are the same.
A foundational step in being an inclusive vendor is to only use gender-neutral language on your website, contracts and social media. Click here to learn more about creating inclusive wedding contracts. Gender-inclusive language sends the clear message to your clients that your business is a welcoming place for LGBTQ+ people—including transgender people.
“In general, I think the best way to be inclusive of trans folk is to be conscious and respectful about language,” says JB Fuoco. “Not...
Let's go over the basics of the LGBTQ+ community, starting with who we are:
L = lesbian
G = gay
B = bisexual
T = transgender
Q = queer
+ = everyone else in our community who feels more aligned with another identity, such as pansexual (sexual attraction not based on gender identity), genderqueer, agender, gender fluid or nonbinary (gender identity that goes beyond or between male or female), and more.
Queer was once a derogatory term but the LGBTQ+ community has reclaimed it as something we’re quite proud of. Not every LGBTQ+ person uses the word. It is more often used by people younger than 40. Queer can pertain to sexual orientation or gender identity. It’s an umbrella term for our community that’s much more accurate than the term gay or lesbian, since those words have much more narrow definitions. Transgender is the word used for people who do not identify with the gender they were assigned at birth. The correct...
Love is the reason you got into this business in the first place. Love fuels the wedding industry. While the wedding industry is booming at $72 billion, it grew to that insane number because of love. Your work should support your living expenses and beyond, no doubt. Just because you love love doesn't mean you give yourself or your work away. You deserve to be paid justly for your work. But at the end of the day, your work should showcase your belief that you're in the business of love. Love is love is love is love. And your clients are in love. That's why they're hiring you. Of course, they're interested in your artisan wares, your modern aesthetic, your equality-mindedness, your incredible venue, your connections and your value of privacy. But the impetus of even having the need to hire you in the first place all goes back to love.
When you're in the business of love, how should you alter (altar!) your thinking? What does that even mean?
1 / Remember that your clients'...
Earn your LGBTQ+ inclusive certification from Equally Wed Pro with our online course. Study at your own pace and graduate with an honorable recognition from the No. 1 LGBTQ+ wedding company.