Say ‘Yess’ to marriage equality – and more business  

Beauty professionals wanting to support the LGBTQIA community – and grow their own business – can now say ‘Yess’ to both thanks to a new app.

Launched last month, the Yess app has been designed to help the LGBTQIA community find non-discriminatory service providers for events such as weddings.

Yess managing director  Jill Burgess came up with the idea for the app in December 2017 shortly after the ‘Yes’ vote led to the legalisation of same-sex marriage and she realised that she could finally marry her partner Kim.

“I drove past the church my parents were married in and thought, ‘Wow, now for the first time in my life, I can get married’,” she recalls.

“I then wondered if anyone in the LGBTQIA community wanted to get married in a church and how you would find out which churches would actually do it.”

Burgess began developing the app to help users find such churches but then expanded it to include other useful categories as well.

The finished app features 22 categories including beauty and hair stylists, accommodation, caterers, florists, jewellers, photographers, venues and celebrants.

Burgess says over 60 providers have already listed their services on the app including one of Australia’s premier marriage celebrants, Martin Moroney.

“As soon as I heard about the Yess app I was in,” he said.

“The app offers a safe environment for same-sex couples to organise their wedding, with so many options at their fingertips.

“I hope more providers across all walks of weddings get on board and support it.

“Yess is all about enabling gay couples to feel comfortable with the 62 percent who said ‘yes’ and steer away from the 38 percent who said ‘no’.

“I like the idea that same-sex couples can now sit down with Yess providers who truly understand how they and their families may be feeling in preparation stages and on the wedding day. It’s a time of high emotion.”

According to the Australian Bureau of Statistics, there were 3149 same sex weddings in the first six months after same-sex marriage was legalised  ‒ more than half (1773) were female couples.

The Yess app is free to download and use – and is available at the App store and Google Play.

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