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NYC restaurants are dying thanks to COVID madness

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City restaurants are open to all guests on Monday, vaxed or not, e.g the first time since August. Let’s all hope that the industry can quickly recover from the devastation wrought by the COVID madness.

Don’t be fooled by the fact that you still can’t get a table at Masa. Outside of the glitziest spots, the picture for restaurants is ugly.

Table reservations are down 53.2% across the city since 2020. In January, that number reached a staggering 72%. But the really bad news can be found in new data from the State Audit Office showing that New York City’s restaurant sector employment fell 25.4% from late 2019 to late 2021 — about 78,000 jobs were lost.

That equates to a large number of closed restaurants, and many of the survivors are saddled with enormous debt.

This 25.4% drop contrasts with a 6.3% drop in all private sector employment in the city – and a National Restaurant jobs down just 1.6%. That’s right: restaurants in New York were hit 15 times harder than the US average.

Behind those losses are “stop the spread” policies imposed amid the pandemic: closures, reduced capacity restaurants, vaccination and mask requirements for workers and customers.

In other words, the numbers are another measure of de Blasio-Cuomo’s damage “Public health” mandates.. Harms focused on our most vulnerable economically: The median annual salary for a restaurant worker in NYC at the end of 2020 was just over $32,400 (and it was falling while overall salaries were rising). And workers in the sector are far more likely to be immigrants, as well as Hispanic or Asian.

Restaurants ran like gangbusters In front-Pandemic. The number of jobs increased by 61% from 2009 to 2019, while the number of restaurants increased by 44%.

Even COVID relief funds have been sucked up by the elite, with 70% of the funds going to institutions in wealthier neighborhoods. Meanwhile, mom and pop restaurants have had to close and lay off their employees.

Unfortunately, these numbers are in very good agreement with New York’s overall employment anemia: 5.3% versus the national rate of 3.8%.

Mayor Eric Adams has taken steps in the right direction, but for the city to truly come back, that trend needs to be reversed. The mayor needs to ditch the private sector Vax mandate, start implementing whatever pro-business policies he can, and focus on restaurant messages.

New York City simply isn’t New York City without its huge buffet of restaurants.

https://nypost.com/2022/03/14/nyc-restaurants-are-dying-thanks-to-covid-insanity/ NYC restaurants are dying thanks to COVID madness

JACLYN DIAZ

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