ROOST’s DEI Initiatives

Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI)

All are welcome here.

The Regional Office of Sustainable Tourism (ROOST) views diversity, equity, inclusion, and belonging as the pathway to achieving a space where all feel welcomed, safe, and valued.

Our unique backgrounds, perspectives, talents, experiences, and contributions as staff in — and residents of — the Adirondacks are the foundation and drivers of our excellence.

We ask ourselves: “How can we help ensure that all residents and visitors feel welcome and included?” What can we do for the people who feel underrepresented in our communities?

We welcome everyone. Our organization embraces opportunities to listen, learn, and grow as we continuously strive to foster communities where everyone can thrive and feel a sense of belonging.

In the Adirondacks, we are proud to support and partner with many local organizations and businesses that promote and support an Adirondacks that welcomes all.

The Adirondacks is a place of natural beauty, charming small towns, epic history, and adventures for all. The Adirondacks belong to everybody.

This is a place where you’ll find accessible adventures and activities for all abilities and skill levels, and communities that we hope you’ll love to meet and feel at home in. If you love the Adirondacks and the outdoors, you belong here.

Indigenous Land Acknowledgement:

We gratefully acknowledge the Haudenosaunee (Iroquois) and Abenaki, on whose ancestral homelands we gather, who have for generations stewarded the lands and waterways of this place that is now known as the Adirondacks.

To learn more about and engage with indigenous cultures, we hope you will visit the Akwesasne Cultural Center in Hogansburg, NY; the Six Nations Iroquois Cultural Center in Onchiota, NY; the Native North American Traveling College in Akwesasne, Ontario, and The Wild Center in Tupper Lake, NY.

Initiatives and Goals

The Regional Office of Sustainable Tourism (ROOST) is committed to fostering an environment of inclusion, diversity, openness, and respect for the many differences that enrich our regions, including race, ethnicity, religion, gender, age, socioeconomic status, national origin, language, sexual orientation, body type, and disability. This effort is essential to our organization and the Adirondack communities we serve.

To help ROOST weave DEI Standards into our program of work, we have formed a DEI committee made of ROOST team members. The committee meets monthly to review the progress made and set upcoming goals.

The following are goals and initiatives that ROOST has undertaken to support inclusiveness in the Adirondacks. Check back as we continue to update these initiatives.

  • Host regular DEI staff training covering a variety of topics
    • Ongoing training and development
  • Continue our partnership with Travel Unity. Travel Unity is a 501(c)(3) focused on increasing diversity in the world of travel through individual and community empowerment. Travel Unity is committed to our goal of ensuring that our organization fosters an open and inclusive work environment, promotes and welcomes a diverse traveler, and ultimately, creates a more diverse Adirondack community. ROOST identified the Travel Unity’s  Certification Program as an opportunity to ensure that our organization fosters an open and inclusive work environment and we strive to meet these goals. 
  • Work to bring educational programming to our regional marketing partners
    • Example: ROOST was the gold sponsor of the Travel Unity Summit which was hosted in Lake Placid on November 5-7, 2021.
  • Build relationships with and pitch stories to travel writers and influencers that appeal to a diverse audience
    • Example: In May 2021, we hosted Ernest White II of “Fly Brother”
    • Example: In June 2021, The Wild Center and ROOST partnered to host Cory Lee from Curb Free with Cory Lee
  • Foster relationships with diverse travel ambassadors to help create authentic content (images, stories, testimonials, etc.) for the regional websites
    • Example: In July 2021, ROOST hosted a familiarization (FAM) trip of diverse travelers in Indian Lake, NY. In addition to traditional travel experiences, the group will participate in a roundtable discussion during their stay to provide valuable feedback on areas we can address to make the Adirondack more welcoming. 
    • Example: ROOST continues to work with content contributors and models that speak authentically to a variety of audiences.
  • Review marketing efforts through the lens of DEI
    • Example: Increased effort to acquire authentic imagery to be inclusive of different races, gender identities, age, disability, sexual orientation, and more which will be used as part of our marketing efforts. If you wish to participate please learn how to join our model roster
  • Identify and develop website resources that more clearly display accessible amenities
    • Survey businesses and attractions on accessibility amenities to update ROOST managed destination websites, ILNY, and Visit Adirondacks
    • Add new accessible travel pages to all ROOST managed destination sites
    • Develop story content to support accessible travel
      • Acquire supporting photo and video content
    • Update alternative text on all websites to increase accessibility
FREE all are welcome here signs