NRAEF : Blog

Celebrating Pride Month with the Restaurant Industry

by | Jun 3, 2021 | Blog Post |

The month of June is Pride Month, and we’re taking this time to recognize and celebrate the impact the LGBTQ+ community makes on the restaurant and foodservice industry every day. Follow along with us all month long as we share stories, feature LGBTQ+ chefs and restaurateurs, and highlight ways to support LGBTQ-owned businesses.

The restaurant industry employs a diverse workforce

The restaurant industry is the nation’s second-largest employer, employing more than 12.5 million people at the end of 2020 — and many are part of the LGBTQ+ community. According to the National Restaurant Association, restaurants employ more minority managers than any other industry. The restaurant industry welcomes everyone to the table, and empowers people from all backgrounds to find success through the vast opportunities offered in the restaurant, foodservice and hospitality industry.

According to the National Gay & Lesbian Chamber of Commerce (NGLCC), LGBTQ+ entrepreneurs own 1.4 million businesses and contribute more than $1.7 trillion to the United States economy annually.  Their report on “America’s LGBT Economy” says the number of non-white LGBTQ+ business owners continues to increase annually as well.

There is still work to be done

Although this month is a time for celebration, we must also recognize that there is still more work to be done to ensure our industry is diverse, inclusive, and a place where all people feel welcome and accepted.

The National Center for Transgender Equality reports that transgender Americans are three times more likely to be unemployed and twice as likely to live in poverty than the general population. Nationwide, more than 1.4 million people identify as transgender and nearly 90 percent have experienced employment discrimination, harassment or mistreatment.

In 2020, the Human Rights Campaign (HRC) reported that more than 37 transgender and gender-nonconforming people were victims of fatal violence, more than HRC has recorded in any other year.

As we celebrate Pride Month, we hope both employees and customers feel comfortable being and expressing who they are when they go to work or sit down for a meal in a restaurant, and are able to do so safely.

Pride Month Feature:

Order Up Podcast – PRIDE in the Restaurant Industry

Order Up, the podcast from the National Restaurant Association, is kicking off Pride month with Transgender activist and restaurateur Michaela Mendelsohn. Michaela shared her transition experience and discussed her mission to help restaurant owners create more inclusive spaces for both employees and customers. Take a listen to the episode to learn how you can become an ally to our friends in the trans community.

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