‘Equality Map’ Promotes LGBTQ-Supportive Businesses in Casper
A former Casper College student has created an online mapping project in order to promote Casper businesses which support lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer citizens.
EqualityMap.com is designed to create inclusive communities and encourage consumers to support those businesses, their owners and their employees.
"The map is basically for businesses to affirm their support for equality-based issues," Travis Glasgow, the map's creator, told K2 Radio News.
Glasgow has been working on the map for several months, inspired by the anti-discrimination resolution passed by Casper City Council in February.
"A couple of people I know, some friends who have had a big impact on the community, people I respect, they were involved in that," Glasgow recalled. "So I was thinking, 'Okay, how can I get involved with my skills?'"
"I just put my skills to use through the map," Glasgow said, adding that it's entirely his project and he is not associated with any larger organization.
Some 150 Casper businesses signed a letter to the Casper City Council in support of the resolution. Glasgow said roughly 85 businesses are currently identified on the map.
It's free for a business owner to have their business listed on the map. Owners can add their business listing in the 'Add a Business' section of the website.
The map is almost entirely composed of Casper businesses for the time being, but a few establishments from elsewhere in Wyoming and Colorado have also added themselves.
"The businesses love it," Glasgow said. "They just think it's cool to be part of something like this."
"For them, it's accountability. It also puts them out there so that people can see them," he added.
As for private citizens, Glasgow said his website has had a lot of return visitors, mostly based in Casper.
"People like it, and they're using it," Glasgow said.
Glasgow hopes to grow the geographic range of his map, expanding into other cities. He hopes to include more detailed economic data and 'heat maps" to show where LGBTQ-supportive legislative activity is strong or weak.
"The potential is there for a resource to mobilize supporters on equality-related issues not just locally, but nationally," Glasgow said in a statement.