Update to the community on NTEN’s DEI work

As another summer draws to a close, it’s time to update you on the diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) work NTEN has undertaken this quarter.

You may have read last month that NTEN is making a membership shift this fall. I love this new approach because it aligns so well with our commitment to equity. In fact, the changes were inspired by asking the question, “How is our current membership model not equitable or inclusive?” The conversation generated in the community resulted in an approach that is consistent with our commitment and led to NTEN articulating its core beliefs for the first time.

Also, for the first time, we’ve formalized a monthly plan for our fiscal year specific to NTEN’s DEI work across all programs and operations. It’s an acknowledgment that DEI work is more than just meeting regularly or checking a box on a grant application. It’s challenging and necessary work that must be thoughtfully considered and mapped out if an organization is to institute change for itself and subsequently for the community it serves.

NTEN’s board created a DEI committee to support the staff’s commitment to equity. This team works to ensure that our board will support decision making with a focus on equity. DEI work should be present at all levels of an organization, and we couldn’t be happier to have our board joining the journey with us.

The application forms to join the 20NTC Session Advisory Committee, to submit 20NTC session applications, and numerous program-specific applications were all updated this year with a statement that encouraged folks “who identify as Black, Indigenous, or other people of color, as well as gender nonconforming, having a disability, LGBTQIA+, and other under-represented community members” to apply. It’s an acknowledgment of NTEN’s DEI goals directly at the program level. We will continue to evolve this question as we use it broadly throughout our organization.

Finally, we’re updating the requirements for posting to NTEN’s job board. New job postings will specify a salary or include a range beginning next month. Including a salary range promotes transparency, mitigates the perpetuation of the gender wage gap, and discourages discrimination of people of color during the application and hiring process. “Depends on Experience” will no longer be an option for the salary field as people have a right to know what the salary range is for a job they are applying for.

This has been our summer. What have you done to further diversity, equity, and inclusion in your organization? Tweet us @NTENorg or email us.

Tristan Penn
I'm originally from Central Kansas and went to college at KU in Lawrence, Kansas (Rock Chalk Jayhawk!). I moved to Portland in 2014 and I love it so far! I've worked in Youth Development for the past 14 years. I'm passionate about nonprofit community engagement and best practices. In my free time, I like to sample the beers that Portland's breweries have to offer, lift weights, and socialize with friends.