After releasing a report earlier this week outlining why it might take 18 months for restaurants to recover from the effects of the pandemic, Restaurant Canada, the not-for-profit that represents the nation’s food industry, has brought forth some more staggering statistics.
According to the results of the latest Labour Force Survey from Statistics Canada, at least 400,000 people previously employed in the Canadian foodservice sector are still out of work.
This number means half of the jobs the sector has lost since the start of the pandemic, as well as a third of the foodservice industry’s workforce, have still not recovered.
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“Reforms to the federal wage subsidy are urgently needed to help foodservice businesses bring more Canadians back to work amid ongoing restrictions,” said David Lefebvre, Restaurants Canada Vice President, Federal and Quebec.
“Forty-four per cent of restaurant operators who responded to our latest survey said they did not apply for the subsidy for at least one of their establishments because it would not meet the requirements.”
Restaurants Canada is calling for reforms to the wage subsidy to rehire more Canadians.
Before COVID-19, restaurants and other foodservice businesses were the fourth-largest source of private-sector jobs in Canada, collectively employing around 1.2 million people.