Creating support networks
New organizations formed in the wake of #MeToo, like Women in Hospitality United, have also taken up this mantle of providing support for women in all stages of their career. Founded by three women with diverse roles in the food industry, WiHU’s mission statement is far-reaching and includes everything from providing “policies that set new standards for equity, accountability, and transparency in the industry,” to empowering “members by providing tools, training, advocacy, and support.” Read more.
Turning competition into camaraderie
Female-only cooking or mixology competitions are showcasing rising talent in the industry while bringing talented women together to support one another. Washburne Culinary Institute in Chicago invites around a dozen of its female students to compete yearly for their Women 1st, Now We’re Cooking competition with a grand prize of $5,000 education scholarship.
Ending gender-based and racial discrimination
In 2018, Julia Turshen founded Equity At The Table, an inclusive digital directory of women and non-binary individuals in food. “Like any industry, I’ve always known it’s centered on straight, white men. That’s nothing new,” she says. Equity At The Table was born when Turshen sought a directory of folks who did not identify as straight, white men in the industry. But she couldn’t find one. Read more.
Giving employees a reason to stick around
“I’ve always thought that it is really unfair to lock someone in, and in most restaurants, you know, the people who get locked into the lower rungs are usually people of color, immigrants, and women,” said Martha Hoover, CEO of Patachou Inc. “We automatically give people more power than other restaurants normally would. And by power I mean really to create a serious career staying at our company. We give them opportunities to build wealth, which is incredibly important.” Read more.