South Africa: An African first – LGBT business network to be launched

In a major boost for South African LGBT businesses and entrepreneurs, an agreement to start an LGBT business network has been struck with the US National Gay & Lesbian Chamber of Commerce (NGLCC). Headed by The Other Foundation, a task team has been set up to begin the process of establishing the network – an African first. It will promote, empower and give a voice to LGBT businesses, advocate for LGBT supplier diversity and inclusion among corporates and provide networking opportunities for its members.

Speaking at the event, openly gay MP Zakhele Mbhele (DA) commented that many of the issues facing the LGBT community, including the heightened vulnerability of black lesbian women in particular, could be directly linked to the country’s socio-economic inequalities. He said that the economic development of all South Africans is vital, adding that, “We have to get the basis of this country fixed to tackle these manifestations of homophobia”.

Xhanti Payi, a trustee of The Other Foundation, told the audience that prejudice and discrimination has often kept LGBT people out of work in South Africa; affecting their ability to make a living: "We need to create spaces where people can create their own businesses and succeed,” he said, describing the founding of the network as “a very important initiative”.  Read more via Mamba Online