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How Dan Andrews' draconian lockdown put 78% of hospitality staff out of work

Victorian hospitality staff have struggled to remain hopeful about their job prospects amid Melbourne’s draconian lockdown. 

Venues in metropolitan Melbourne believe it will take at least two years to recover from the harsh coronavirus restrictions.  

Hospitality platform Barcats surveyed 203 Victorian workers and venue owners to uncover the bleak outlook for the industry. 

Barcats CEO Jeffrey Williams said a shocking amount of the state’s hospitality staff, almost 80 per cent, were currently out of work.  

Victorian hospitality staff have struggled to remain hopeful about their job prospects during Melbourne's draconian COVID-19 lockdown (a venue for lease in Melbourne's CBD pictured)

Victorian hospitality staff have struggled to remain hopeful about their job prospects during Melbourne’s draconian COVID-19 lockdown (a venue for lease in Melbourne’s CBD pictured)  

More than two thirds of hospitality workers have lost confidence in the industry and 80 per cent of restaurant and bar staff are out of work (Staff at the Portsea Hotel pictured)

More than two thirds of hospitality workers have lost confidence in the industry and 80 per cent of restaurant and bar staff are out of work (Staff at the Portsea Hotel pictured) 

‘Although venues are trying to stay open with takeaway options and home deliveries, 78.65 per cent of Victoria’s hospitality staff are currently not working, with over half of these workers from central Melbourne,’ Mr Williams explained.  

More than two thirds of hospitality workers had also lost confidence in the industry and believed the second lockdown would have long-lasting effects on jobs.   

‘45.83 per cent of staff surveyed specifically state that the second wave of COVID-19 shutdowns has made them consider a career change away from hospitality,’ Mr Williams said.   

The Colonial Leisure Group runs several venues across Victoria and group executive Andrew Lewis said coronavirus restrictions would damage their operations. 

‘With the international and state borders remaining closed our CBD venues will hurt the most relying heavily on full hotels and international travellers.

‘We’re anticipating most of our venues will only be able to operate at 80 per cent for the next couple of years whilst the industry tries to get back on its feet,’ he said. 

Mr Williams explained that when Melbourne’s bars and restaurants reopened for good there would be a staff shortage so young people shouldn’t be put off starting a career in hospitality.

Venues in metropolitan Melbourne believe it will take at least two years to recover from the coronavirus restrictions (An empty restaurant on Lygon street in Melbourne's CBD pictured)

Venues in metropolitan Melbourne believe it will take at least two years to recover from the coronavirus restrictions (An empty restaurant on Lygon street in Melbourne’s CBD pictured) 

A survey showed that at least 45.83 per cent of Victorian hospitality staff had considered a career change away from hospitality (Empty shopfronts pictured in Melbourne's CBD)

A survey showed that at least 45.83 per cent of Victorian hospitality staff had considered a career change away from hospitality (Empty shopfronts pictured in Melbourne’s CBD)

‘When Melbourne’s CBD eventually re-opens, venues will be crying out for staff to help them recover and this is when the staff shortage will be detrimental,’ he said.

‘With no overseas travellers we will be relying on Aussie’s to fill the gap. 

‘We need to encourage more youngsters to consider hospitality as a career and we need more mature workers to be get back into hospitality, with venues adapting shifts to be more suitable for part-time workers.’   

Victoria recorded another day of double-digit coronavirus infections on Wednesday, with 76 new cases across the state.

A further 11 deaths have also been announced, taking the state’s death toll to 694.   

Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews (pictured on Wednesday) announced his road map out of Stage Four restrictions and will allow customers to dine at venues at the end of October

Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews (pictured on Wednesday) announced his road map out of Stage Four restrictions and will allow customers to dine at venues at the end of October 

Victoria has recorded 76 new COVID-19 infections and 11 deaths on Wednesday (pictured, two women in Melbourne wear face masks near the beach on Tuesday)

Victoria has recorded 76 new COVID-19 infections and 11 deaths on Wednesday (pictured, two women in Melbourne wear face masks near the beach on Tuesday)

The rise comes after Premier Daniel Andrews unveiled his road map out of Stage Four restrictions on Sunday – leaving many businesses devastated.

In order to move to the next step of easing restrictions on September 28, Melbourne must record an average daily infection rate between 30 and 50 over the next two weeks. 

Cafes, bars and restaurants will be able to have customers dine outside on October 26, as long as the statewide case average has fallen under five for the previous fortnight.

Customers won’t be allowed inside until November 23 and only if there have been no cases at all for the previous two weeks. 

The strict draconian curfew enforced in Melbourne will be also be extended to October 26 but will be increased to 9pm-5am. Currently it begins at 8pm. 

MELBOURNE’S ROADMAP OUT OF COVID-19 LOCKDOWN – WHAT YOU WILL BE ABLE TO DO AND WHEN:

Step one: The first step will come in to place on September 13.

Step two: The second step will be implemented when Melbourne has 30-50 COVID-19 cases a day on average over the past 14 days. The aim is for this to come into place on September 28. 

Step three: The move to step three will occur when there is a daily statewide average of five new cases over the past 14 days. The aim is for this to come into place on October 26.

Step four: The move to step four will come when there have been no new COVID-19 cases in the past 14 days. The aim is for this to come into place on November 23.

COVID Normal: After 28 days of no new COVID-19 cases, things will return to normal. 

Step one – 11.59pm on September 13:

Curfew will be eased to 9pm-5am

People can still only leave home for the four reasons (shopping, exercise, work and care or medical attention)

Public gatherings increased to two people, or a household, for a maximum of two hours

 Singles can have one nominated person to their home as part of the ‘singles social bubble’ 

Childcare and early educators to remain closed

Schools will continue to learn remotely unless they have exemptions

 Adult education to continue to be done remotely, unless they have exemption

 Only go to work if you are in a permitted industry 

– Cafes and restaurants will continue with take away only

– Retail businesses will remain open for essential shopping, with others only operating with click and collect

– Only one person per household can do the essential shopping 

Step two – September 28:

Public gatherings increase again to five people from a maximum of two households

Childcare and early educators can re-open

Schools to continue with remote learning, but Prep to Grade Two and Year 11 and Year 12 students will gradually return to class in Term 4 

 There will be an increase to permitted workplaces

Step three – October 26:

Curfew is no longer in place

There are no restrictions on leaving home

Public gatherings increase to 10 people together outdoors

 A ‘household bubble’ will be introduced, so five people from one house can visit another 

Remote learning to continue, but Grades 3 to Year 11 can gradually return to class

– Adult education to continue to be done remotely, but hands on classes will see a phased return to onsite 

 Work from home is encouraged

– Up to 10 people can eat together at restaurants and cafes, with the majority of tables outdoor

– Retail shops to reopen, with hairdresses operating under safety measures but beauty stores to remain closed

– Real estate agents can conduct private inspections by appointment

– The one person per household limit on shopping is to be revoked 

Step four – November 23:

Public gatherings to increase to 50 people outdoors

 Up to 20 visitors can attend a home at any one time

 All adult education will return to onsite with safety measures in place

– Groups limited to 20 indoors and a maximum of 50 patrons per venue

– All retail stores to reopen, while real estate agents can operate with safety measures and by keeping a record of attendants

Step five – COVID normal:

Public gatherings have no restriction

 There will also be no restriction on visitors to homes

– Phased return to onsite work for work from home workers

  Schools to reopen as normal

– Restrictions on hospitality removed, but venues to continue keeping records 

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