I guess that is the question every person is asking themselves especially in hospitality. How long? How long, will I be out of work? How long, will the restaurants be closed for. How long will this go on? The real answer is nobody knows. I can say with all certainty at least 30 days, it will probably be closer to 60 days. I am lucky, I am still working the few hours I have been given. Most people who are not salaried have been furloughed or laid off so they are starting unemployment. The harsh reality is setting in of what is happening. The panic of will I still have a job tomorrow, is very real, especially since all tours, bars and public spaces are closed.
The restaurant industry is in shambles, the hotel industry is just as bad. I can’t speak for the restaurants, I am on the hotel side of the hospitality industry. Many people have urged congress about restaurants and I agree 110% they need help, the hotel side also needs help. I have gotten so many texts from friends in the industry, telling me they and every hourly employee at the hotel were laid off. Housekeepers, front desk, accountants, bell, valet, concierges, sales all gone, all told we are sorry but we are trying to keep the doors opened and this needs to happen. Tens of thousands of people were just told, you don’t have a job or being told your hours are being drastically cut so we can actually make payroll. Yes it is really that bad in the hotel industry right now. As I said I am lucky, I have been told not yet and no decision has been made. I know it is coming and if you think it won’t, they laid off the Controller at another hotel in the city (the money man). I always considered the controller essential hotel personnel, that is scary as hell.
No body know how long it will be for the industry we hope short. We hope April 5th we can get back to normal. My gut is telling me that is not going to happen. Many hotel employees were told they will be laid off for 60 days, some weren’t even give a date. The ones that remain are thinking May is going to be a bust as well. My lunch conversation was essentially talking about who and what properties have furloughed all hourly employees. We all know we are next, the big question is when. I was offered a temporary job for when we get back up, if I need it. I pray I don’t, I love my job and my coworkers. I think that is the hardest thing is we are all walking around knowing we are next and we all care about each other. If you have never worked in a hotel, it is hard to explain but you are truly family. I guess that is why I stayed in the industry, I moved from Michigan at 19 didn’t know a soul. I started working at a hotel and they became family, every hotel I have ever worked at it has been like that. My current hotel is no different even though I have been there less than three months. The past year, I lost two amazing ladies, who I worked with years ago. I am still in contact with those from past properties, we check on each other. You can never plan for something like this, I mean a pandemic? Terrorism, bad economy, yes because we have been through it. Pandemic? Nope, there are very few who went through the Pandemic of 1918. I do hope we learn from this, I hope we become a better society, I hope our isolation will allow us to become better people. I also hope people will realize how stupid it is to hoard toilet paper.
Also if you need to talk please contact the National Suicide Prevention Hotline at: 1-800-273-8255