Ambassador to Korea Philip Turner Backs Diversity
New Zealand Ambassador to Korea Philip Turner, the first openly gay ambassador to Korea whose same-sex spouse is recognised by the Korean government, was interviewed recently by Korea Times journalist Kwon Mee-yoo about New Zealand’s role in supporting Korean pride events.
Diversity has been a key value for New Zealand and the embassy has been supporting pride events since before Turner came to Korea. In 2020 and 2021, the June Pride festival switched to virtual space due to the COVID-19 pandemic and the New Zealand Embassy shared video interviews of Georgina Beyer, the world’s first transgender member of Parliament, by Amnesty Korea.
The ambassador believes that championing diversity is not only the right thing to do as human beings, but also for the national interest to create a stronger, better country.
“Modern New Zealand is very diverse and it’s a great strength. Diversity creates stronger organisations, stronger countries, stronger society,” Turner says. “If people are able to be themselves and bring their full personality to whatever they do in their life, then they will be happier. And society will be richer and more successful as a result.”
Original article by Kwon Mee-yoo, The Korea Times, June 28, 2021.
Photo by Lee Soo-jin.