In some Jacksonville restaurants, the demand for service is growing faster than the ability to hire new employees

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – Hire Now: This is what many restaurant owners across Jacksonville are promoting because they need help.

However, some owners say that despite the need to hire new employees, not many people complete job applications.

When the coronavirus pandemic began, some restaurants had to lay off staff as COVID-19 restrictions made it difficult to rely on customers to indulge in the food. But now that things are slowly returning to normal, the demand for service is growing faster than the ability to hire new employees.

Business has started to pick up at the Burrito Gallery in downtown Jacksonville as more people are vaccinated and COVID-19 restrictions have been eased. Jennifer Lee, the restaurant manager, currently wears many hats in her position because of her limited staff.

ā€œWe definitely need two to four more employees. That would help us, ā€Lee told News4Jax.

Lee says she and her limited staff need the help because the demand for services is back as high as it was before the pandemic. But despite advertisements for available jobs, it was difficult to hire people, says Lee.

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ā€œA lot has to do with the fact that at this point people don’t even apply. We haven’t been able to get people who actually want to work and are concerned about the work to work, ā€said Lee.

The Burrito Gallery isn’t the only restaurant experiencing this problem. News4Jax has received similar complaints from other restaurants in the Jacksonville area that are also having difficulty hiring help. Restaurant owners News4Jax spoke to believe that the reason it is difficult to get people to apply for jobs despite the high unemployment rate is because people are making more money with weekly COVID-19 unemployment checks . And recently, many people have received stimulus checks up to $ 1,400.

ā€œUnemployment has definitely prevented people from getting back to work. The stimulus check definitely delayed her getting back to work, ā€said Lee.

In the meantime, Lee says, she and her little co-workers will be working longer hours before she can hire new ones.

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