HRC Releases Open Letter about Dorchester Hotels during Fashion Weeks

by HRC Staff

Urges fashion industry leaders to send a message to the Sultan of Brunei by avoiding his hotels


Washington –– The Human Rights Campaign (HRC), the nation’s largest lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) civil rights organization, today released an open letter to leaders in the fashion industry urging them to avoid the Sultan of Brunei’s hotels during their upcoming travel for menswear and haute couture fashion weeks in London, Milan and Paris.  The Sultan has faced an international backlash following his recent decision to begin implementing a horrific series of penal code reforms that could lead to the persecution, repression, and even execution of women and LGBT Bruneians.

“The simple truth is that profits from these hotels belong to a regime that could start stoning women and LGBT people as soon as next year,” said HRC in the letter.  “It’s our hope that if you’re traveling to any of the fashion shows in Europe over the next two months, please send a message to the Sultan and take your business elsewhere.” The full text of the letter is available here.

Dorchester Collection properties in those three cities include 45 Park Lane and The Dorchester in London, Hotel Principe di Savoia in Milan, and Hôtel Plaza Athénée and Le Meurice in Paris.  In particular,Le Meurice and the Hotel Principe di Savoia have been very popular locations during fashion weeks in previous years.

The Human Rights Campaign, as well as other prominent civil rights organizations and leaders in fashion, business, entertainment, and philanthropy have widely condemned these laws, and many have publicly announced that they will avoid Dorchester Collection properties in protest.

American Vogue Editor-in-Chief Anna Wintour and Glamour Editor-in-Chief Cindi Leive recently joined François-Henri Pinault, the leadership of Yves Saint Laurent fashion house, and many other prominent voices in the fashion world in announcing they’re avoiding the Dorchester Collection’s global properties in protest of the Sultan of Brunei’s new laws.

HRC applauds the many designers, companies, and leaders in the fashion industry who have refused to turn a blind eye to the Sultan’s blatant disregard for the human rights of all Bruneians.  In the wake of intense criticism of its owner’s planned implementation of draconian new laws, the Sultan’s company announced last week that it had cancelled its annual fashion competition and gala, known as the Dorchester Collection Fashion Prize.  The decision by the hotel company was made within hours of Dorchester learning of a planned action by HRC today to bring attention to the fashion prize.

The Human Rights Campaign is America's largest civil rights organization working to achieve lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender equality. By inspiring and engaging all Americans, HRC strives to end discrimination against LGBT citizens and realize a nation that achieves fundamental fairness and equality for all.



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