The death of George Floyd has created a momentous shift in our country’s complacent attitudes towards facing and fixing our institutionalized racism. However, it is hopeful to see federal reform plans, states taking actions, and mayors being held accountable. Statements from various industries and corporate leaders are making their statements to change. Black lives matter, and so do Black-owned restaurants and hospitality venues. So where does that leave travel and restaurant bloggers?
In 2009, I launched this website (my first post!). In the beginning, it was difficult to create content, as many leaders in the hospitality industry shut their doors to my passion for hotel lobbies. My idea to build local interest in our hotel lobbies took some convincing, but it worked. Today, I don’t much have to worry about creating content, as it is delivered to me almost daily in press releases and beautiful high-resolution photos. It is easy to click and paste content and share it on social media. Because of this, I have become disconnected and less thoughtful of showcasing content that is truly representative of the diversity of our city.
Lead with Data
To be transparent, I am a Navajo Native American born and raised on my reservation who moved to Washington, DC in 2006. I have served as a communications director for many Native-mission-focused nonprofits and conservation groups. I have led equity conversations on both Native American and LGBT issues. To begin these conversations, I take statistics and data as a starting point on how to better represent your industry.
Maybe I’ve been “mindful,” “aware,” and “thoughtful,” but have I really been intentional with the content I create? The answer is no. In this pie chart, I share with you that our city is very diverse, and my website has not been representative of that. I take personal responsibility for that. From this moment forward, I want to be a better blogger and highlight all of what our city has to offer.
We Have to Reach Out and Build
Although I was able to find demographics, I was not able to pinpoint restaurant and hotel ownership. Nevertheless, a good starting point for me has been various sites like FeedtheMalik and WillDrinkForTravel. I will also build a better network of diverse voices who have already been putting in the work.
Because of writers like Anela and Ashlee, Black-owned restaurants are getting the recognition they deserve, especially in the Washington DC DMV area. I wanted to create this post to let you know that going forward, the content on this site will be more representative of Washington, DC.
If you are a public relations firm representing any restaurants or offerings, please keep me in the loop, as well as restaurant owners, please add me to your media lists for promotions, new menus, happy hours, new hires or promotions. Thank you for taking the time to read this. Subscribe below or reach out to me via e-mail.