Our president, Isabel Novoa and our director, Charles-E. Bélanger participated in the discussion on the "Recommendations for the assistance of international tourists in emergency situations".
The meeting took place on November 26th virtually. At the beginning it was attended by more than 100 representatives of different governments from all over the world. Later, representatives from 11 organizations, including ISTO, joined the meeting.
Currently, the UNWTO is working on "Recommendations for the assistance of international tourists in emergency situations". These recommendations have recently been developed by the UNWTO with the aim of supporting both governments and the private sector in their actions for the recovery of international tourism, while ensuring an adequate level of protection for international tourists in the event of an emergency situation.
During the meeting, Isabel Novoa - president of ISTO indicated that "we agree with the principles of the text on recommendations and in particular point 5 which refers to the issue of accessibility". At the same time, she emphasized that social tourism can be negatively affected by excessive regulation and that it is extremely relevant to ensure, now more than ever, that tourism is accessible to vulnerable minorities.
In this regard, ISTO recommended to the UNWTO Committee that it should be included that "tourism is a right for all and should be accessible to all, including vulnerable minorities, while ensuring the safety and protection of workers in the tourism industry".
Finally, ISTO had the opportunity to share that our working group on accessible tourism is currently developing the "Recommendations to assist tourism providers in welcoming people with disabilities during a health crisis such as COVID-19".