The math isn’t adding up for prospective restaurant and hotel workers.
While there are jobs aplenty, the money isn’t providing enough allure, in many cases because unemployment benefits bring more than do minimum-wage jobs.
The examples are eye-opening.
Giselle Deiaco, owner two New York City restaurants, painted a grim picture. She told Fox Business that, pre-pandemic, she’d see hundreds of applications for just one position and in-person hiring events would draw 50 people or more.
Today, she says, applications are only “trickling in” and, as for in-person applicants, she says only four or five people make it for an interview.
“A lot of people have left or they get unemployment checks,” Deiaco told Fox. “Some get more than what they need. It’s been like that for a few months already.”
Deiaco believes these days many would prefer to stay home, “living on their unemployment check.”
Dino Ferraro, who owns Capone’s Italian Cucina and Black Trumpet Bistro in Orange County, Calif., told Fox Business a similar story – despite the opportunity, many of his former employees would rather not come back and commit to working full time; they’re finding a better bottom line for now by continuing to collect unemployment benefits.
“When we place the ad…we get one-fifth of the response compared before,” he said.
Others in the hospitality industry feel the pain.
Rebecca Lamb, sales director at a Gainesville, Fla., Springhill Suites by Marriott, referenced weekly checks of up to $275 are discouraging some people from returning to work, according to the Alligator, an independent news site.
Lamb told the outlet she expects staffing shortages to continue as long as people receive financial assistance from the government.
“People just don’t want to work,” she said.