Hong Kong risks losing some of its brightest talents if it does not start protecting its LGBTI citizens, Dr Suen Yiu-tung, assistant professor of the Gender Studies Programme at the Chinese University of Hong Kong, has warned.
In a column in local newspaper the South China Morning Post, the academic warned that "sexual migration"–-the international relocation motivated, directly or indirectly by sexuality—was going to hurt Hong Kong.
Dr Suen Yiu-tung's research revealed 39% of lesbian, gay, and bisexual people in Hong Kong had thought about leaving because of the lack anti-discrimination laws and that 48% had considered leaving because same-sex marriage was not legal.
Some 26% had considered leaving because of the difficulties facing same-sex partners who wanted children.
"It means that Hong Kong may be driving a significant proportion of the young and well-educated LGB workforce away because of the government's failure to provide legal protection and recognition for them," Dr Suen Yiu-tung wrote.
Same-sex marriage, overseas same-sex marriage, and anti-discrimination laws for LGBT do not exist in Hong Kong.
Dr Suen Yiu-tung said he hoped that Hong Kong Chief Executive hopeful John Tsang Chun-wah's plan to encourage people to stay would also involve creating a more more inclusive place for gay, lesbian, and bisexual people.