Despite Florida's anti-LGBTQ laws, Orlando is a top destination for San Francisco residents, report says

We're just wondering why

click to enlarge Despite Florida's anti-LGBTQ laws, Orlando is a top destination for San Francisco residents, report says
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Orlando is a top landing destination for former San Francisco residents, a new report says. And we're just stuck wondering: WHY?

The data comes from a migration report from moveBuddha, which analyzed why San Franciscans are leaving the city in waves and where they're going.

Oddly enough, it seems they're coming here. They report that Orlando is the fifth most popular spot for San Francisco residents to move to, and we can't help but assume Orlando's role as an LGBTQ+-friendly place is playing a part — despite the state's slate of travel advisories and anti-LGBTQ+ laws.

San Francisco has a rich queer history, as the first city to legalize gay marriage and elect an openly gay city official. It's acted as a hub for LGBTQ+ communities for decades.

And while Orlando may not have always been as historically welcoming, its role as a queer-friendly town has only continued to grow throughout the years.

But the question remains: If that's what the former Cali residents are looking for, isn't the surrounding state of Florida a deterrent? While it's true Orlando is brimming with an inclusive culture and plenty of resources, Florida as a whole is not.

Amid the state's roaring battle against gay and trans folks, countless pieces of legislation aimed at revoking basic rights have been floated and passed. Gov. Ron DeSantis and his fellow Republicans filled Florida's 2023 legislative session with bills that target drag shows, sexual and gender identity education, preferred pronoun use in schools, bathroom use by trans folks and much more.

That isn't to say there's no hope for the Sunshine State. As long as there's a battle to fight, Florida's LGBTQ advocates and allies will fight it.

We've got iconic drag spots suing the state, dad-rock musicians playing Florida shows in drag, Orlando representatives very publicly throwing expletives at our governor and advocates fighting the harmful rhetoric and laws coming from the Capitol.

So, ex-San Franciscans, welcome — and get ready to join the fight.

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Chloe Greenberg

Chloe Greenberg is the Digital Content Editor for Orlando Weekly.
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