Industry group says new set of COVID-19 rules will "irreparably harm" Ontario restaurants
Restaurants Canada is calling on the Ontario government to take action in supporting the food industry following restrictions affecting indoor dining.
On Monday, the organization issued a statement in regard to the new set of restrictions affecting restaurants in the province.
They claimed that the new set of rules will “irreparably harm” the industry and that restaurants are not the problem.
“Once again, Ontario makes a move that will irreparably harm our industry without any consultation. The foodservice industry continues to bear the brunt of the restrictions and pay the cost of fighting this pandemic, despite having done everything they have been asked,” read the statement.
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As of January 5, indoor dining in restaurants, bars, and food establishments in Ontario will be put to a stop for the next 21 days as COVID-19 cases see record-breaking numbers in the province and hospitalizations increase.
“The data that we have seen show that restaurants are NOT the problem, yet we continue to be singled out and have never been allowed to meet with the Chief Medical Officer or the Ministry of Health to discuss data and strategies for restaurants, but have been turned down at every turn.”
Restaurant Canada is asking the Ontario government to support the industry in a number of ways like providing grants to restaurants, deferring HST payments which would intern allow restaurants to keep their money, opening a portal to allow rebates for property taxes and utilities to be processed expeditiously and re-imposing the commercial eviction ban that expired on December 31, 2021.
Toronto restaurants like Elm Street Deli and Cherry Street BBQ have since reposted the statement from Restaurants Canada on Instagram.
One Toronto restaurant has decided to pause all its services, including takeout and delivery and to give their chefs and managers a break.
As for the other restaurants harshly affected, Ontario residents can support local businesses at this time through takeout and delivery orders.
Restrictions are in place until at least January 26.