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20th April 2022

Hospitality workers mental health worse now than during pandemic

Written by: Edward Waddell
UK restaurant owners have been facing a mental health crisis, with new research from Flipdish finding the Covid-19 pandemic and subsequent staff shortages has added fuel the fire.

Data from 200 UK hospitality decision-makers revealed that 37% of restaurant owners believe their mental health has been hit badly due to the staff shortage crisis, with nearly a third (29%) saying it’s the worst their mental wellbeing has ever been. 

Around 45% of restaurant owners are having to ask staff to work longer hours and 47% are having to work longer hours themselves to deal with the shortfall. The research found 39% of the restaurant owners believe there should be more support from the government to attract talent back to the hospitality sector.

Fionn Hart, UK country manager at Flipdish, said: “The talent crisis, inflation, VAT rises, inconsistent restrictions and low cash reserves have given restaurant owners sleepless nights. As restrictions were completely lifted earlier in the year, office parties and social gatherings are on the rise causing a spike in the number of customers coming through the door.

“It’s time the government opens its eyes to the pressures on the hospitality workforce, who are battling to protect their mental wellbeing whilst also keeping their businesses afloat. It's become clear that financial aid for the sector simply isn’t enough.”

When asked about the impact the state of the labour market has had on their mental wellbeing, restaurant owners say that there isn’t enough support in the industry at all and the government should do more to support mental health (32%).

Kris Hall, founder of The Burnt Chef Project - a not-for-profit social enterprise fully committed to making the hospitality profession healthier and more sustainable, added: “The wellbeing of our teams has been neglected for far too long and the demand for our free support service, hospitality and wellbeing training modules and resources highlights just how much support hospitality professionals are in need of. 

“In order for the hospitality profession and industry to thrive, we need to provide our leaders with the skills to manage with confidence, empathy and ensure that the wellbeing of both themselves and their teams is priority.

“This is why we at The Burnt Chef Project believe in and dedicate our time not just to helping those who have mental health issues and need someone to talk to but we also focus on building the capability of the greatest asset in our trade, the people who make up the beating heart of our industry.”

Anyone in hospitality, their family or dependents experiencing difficulties with mental health can text ‘BURNTCHEF’ to 85258 for free and in confidence 24/7.