Cooking with Pride: 6 Tips for Making Your Kitchen Safe and Inclusive For Everyone

Looking to create an accepting kitchen culture? Here are 6 tips on how you can be a better ally to the LGBTQIA+ community, in your kitchen. Learn from industry leaders and chefs.

Pride month is a time when we focus on and show our support for the LGBTQIA+ community and its allies.. It also gives us the opportunity to learn more about creating a welcoming and inclusive kitchen environment and to share the progress we are making in the hospitality industry. 

In this blog, we share inspiration on how to create an inclusive workspace. Read on and learn more about how to start being an ally, using inclusive language, standing up for yourself, finding support in queer communities as well as leading by example.

Listening is essential to be a good ally

As leaders in our industry, we need to set the tone and raise the bar for the next generation of chefs. Take a step back, listen, learn and make the effort to change. Listening rather than offering your opinion, is the first step in being a good ally. Be available and create an environment where everyone feels comfortable. 

Kim-Maree Moore
Restaurant consultant and owner, Kimiko Projects

Use the support of a queer community

The greatest resource to find support is a queer community. Platforms such as Queers in Food and Beverage and initiatives like Kelly’s Cause are communities that help. Community is everything and finding spaces both online and in person, to discuss problems, find peers and organise how we can help each other, is exactly what the queer community does best.

Beth Olivier 
Head Chef, Edit Restaurant and mental health first aider

Have the confidence to stand up for yourself

You need to have a thick skin to work in a kitchen. Being gay in a straight world helped me build that skin. By learning to stand up for yourself you could protect yourself against discrimination. Another reminder: let’s be kind to each other.

Jeff Kawakami
Private chef and caterer

Value individuals for their talents

It's important,  in this day and age, to have a team that's diverse. We’re human beings first, regardless of who we are racially, our gender, sexuality or what our belief systems are. Value the person because of what they are made of and the talent that they have.

James Khoza 
Executive Chef, Sandton Sun Hotel; President of South Africa Chefs Association

Break the silence

Always, always speak up. Change won't occur unless we demand it. We shouldn’t have to do that emotional labour, but we’re paving the way for future talents in the industry. If marginalised people don’t speak up about how they won't be disrespected, it's not likely to change.

Ariane Resnick
Private special diet chef and certified nutritionist

Treat staff members like family

Being a chef is extremely hard work. The people you spend those long hours with, the ones you sweat and you literally bleed with, become your family. My absolute best is when you identify a food lover in the kitchen who takes pride in their work. Because I know that I have met a family member and they will be part of my world. 

Johnny Hamman
Chef and Founder, John Joseph – The Anatomy of Food


Fairkitchens believes that every member of the LGBTQIA+ community must be treated fairly, not just for one moment in the year, but every day, every week, every month and every year. Creating a welcoming and inclusive kitchen environment, on a daily basis, is essential to help your team feel safe, accepted and appreciated, regardless of their sexual orientation or gender identity.

Looking for more inspiration from chefs and industry leaders? 

Sign up for our free leadership training today to learn how to recruit, retain and lead a diverse team. 

Follow us on Facebook, Instagram or LinkedIn to join the discussion around #FairKitchens.