We believe in a community where everyone – especially those facing obstacles – has an equal opportunity for personal growth, achievement and a better future.
As an organization deeply committed to social justice, NECAT embraces diversity, equity & inclusion (DEI), and will do everything in our power to assure our mission, services, culture and governance reflect this.
Our training model is strongly focused on leveling the playing field for adults who have been underrepresented or marginalized. But at this time of national reckoning with systemic racism, we realize that we need to do more to ensure that all of our collaborations and employer partnerships in the city respect this ideal and address and break the barriers that keep people from moving forward in their lives.
We believe a more diverse workforce will help to accelerate the pace of change, making Boston a more welcoming and vibrant place for everyone who lives, works and visits here. We applaud those who are advancing the DEI cause and will work in concert with them to promote it in the food services industry and in the communities we serve.
We're committed to the following:
- Including DEI as a core organizational value and part of each of the pillars of our curriculum.
- Recruiting more people of color to our Board, management and staff to reflect the make-up and concerns of the communities we serve.
- Partnering with people of color who are owners, managers, and chefs to make our programming and job placement more sensitive to their needs.
- Including DEI workshops in our staff development programs and seeking student and graduate feedback on DEI sensitivity.
- Bringing in chefs and industry leaders who are people of color to speak to students, and when developing new programs, ensure they are culturally sensitive, and clearly support our DEI objectives.
- Promoting DEI through communications to our stakeholders.
“As a leading nonprofit focused on addressing underserved communities in Massachusetts, we need to play our part in making a real difference in tackling all forms of systemic discrimination.”
– Maarten Hemsley, NECAT Founder, Board Chair & President
“There isn’t a magic formula about how to make the culinary industry more inclusive. While the best answer is to hire more BIPOC, job interviews shouldn’t be a nerve-wracking experience for those individuals – with nervous glances into the kitchen to see if there’s someone who looks like them, or feel like they must stifle their dialect or background.”
-Sāsha Coleman, NECAT graduate and former Co-Owner of Tanám in Somerville
is the 2nd most diverse industry in the U.S. (Forbes Insight)
50.4% of restaurant employees are people of color (Restaurant News)
only 150 of the 11,000 eateries in Greater Boston are Black-owned