NOLA restaurants struggling to fill jobs

Updated: Apr. 27, 2021 at 4:54 PM CDT
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NEW ORLEANS (WVUE) - New Orleans restaurants are facing a staffing crisis as more of them struggle to reopen amid the pandemic.

Eric Cook, Executive Chef and Owner of Gris-Gris in New Orleans, says he can’t open seven days a week because he can’t staff that many days. He says it’s been a challenge finding employees as some restaurant workers were forced to find another career during the pandemic.

“That core base of our industry had to find something else to do to survive and people are overlooking that. It’s not the owners saying we don’t have the money, it’s people had to survive and they had to go take care of their families and they had to take care of themselves, so that lateral move to a different job was by necessity,” said Cook.

The Chief Operating Officer of Creole Cuisine Restaurant Concepts, Zeid Ammari, says his company is also dealing with the staffing shortage.

“It’s very real right now, we have close to five locations that we’re not able to reopen because of the unavailable amount of employees. Number two, we are, in a good bit of our locations, doing limited hours and limited days,” said Ammari.

Ammari is asking patrons to be patient right now with slower than usual service as restaurants and bars deal with the current staffing shortage.

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