Grit Hospitality is a Boston-born hospitality staffing platform. We serve employers and talent who make it their life work to create exceptional guest experiences. From tour guides, to food preps, concierge, and sous chefs; housekeepers, servers, managers, drivers, caterers, and casino workers—we aim to connect people to the right job opportunities by matching the best qualities of a person to the best qualities of a company and brand ethos.
As of March 17, 2020, countries are taking drastic measures to stop and prevent the spread of the deadly Covid-19 virus. One measure has been to reduce capacity and social interaction—each country and each state with their own orders.
Here in our home state of Massachusetts, the governor has ordered that gatherings of 25 or more people are prohibited. This leaves the hospitality industry is in crisis and we will most likely continue to see these closures affecting the hospitality industry worldwide.
We want to make resources and information available to those who are currently facing a time of uncertainty and crisis. In support of the hospitality industry workers and companies, we open our hearts to the people who have made it their life and company’s work to extend courtesy, kindness, and delight to guests all over the world.
We offer you important points of reference that could help inform you of your situation.
What the world is saying about Covid-19 and its impact
According to the US Department of Health and Human Services, Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) is a novel coronavirus that was first identified during an investigation into an outbreak in Wuhan, China—it had never been seen by the healthcare industry prior to this and had no vaccine or clinical study. Because it is highly contagious and has a high fatality rate, particularly among the elderly and those with health complications, societies across the globe are taking extreme precautions to prevent an outbreak that could cripple healthcare systems and economies.
Refer to the most reputable sources of information from international and domestic government leaders.
The World Health Organization has teams of experts from all over the world updating us in real-time on the severity of the outbreak and most recent developments and information.
The Center for Disease Control is an organization of American institutions focused on the developments around the disease and things you can do to plan properly.
President Trump made remarks on the travel and tourism industry, acknowledging how detrimental closures could be to workers and companies. Some notable quotes:
“The IRS will defer tax payments for affected individuals and businesses.”
“We’re working with Congress to provide rapid relief for affected workers and industries.”
“The Small Business Administration announced disaster loans, which provide impacted businesses with up to $2 million. And we’ve asked Congress to increase the SB lending authority. We’re going to be going up to $50 billion and, actually, much more than that for small businesses.”
Please be diligent about your news sources and be aware of false claims and sensationalized messaging.
You might be out of a job right now
With establishments around the world closing its doors—from gyms to salons, bars and restaurants, hotels and event spaces—you might be someone who is currently out of a job. In Massachusetts, the government is working quickly to defer or suspend taxes or payments for employers during closure times, and provide relief to employees who are without pay. The Executive Office of Labor and Workforce Development (EOLWD) and the Department of Unemployment Assistance (DUA), in coordination with the US Department of Labor (USDOL), are taking a series of actions to assist workers and employers.
Items of note regarding the legislation and availability of relief for hospitality workers and employers:
“Governor Baker issued an emergency order limiting gatherings to 25 individuals and prohibiting on-premises consumption of food or drink at bars and restaurants, beginning on March 17.”
“To assist individuals who cannot work due to the impact of COVID-19, the Administration is filing emergency legislation that will allow new claims to be paid more quickly by waiving the one week waiting period for unemployment benefits. Read the legislation here.
“The pending federal legislation proposes further relief including additional money for unemployment benefits, and relief to employers for charges related to unemployment benefits paid due to COVID-19.”
What to do with your time
If you’re reading this, you most likely have access to the internet as well as a wealth of resources on what to do—with your body, with your home, with your kids and family, with your job status, etc. We urge you to use the extra time on your hands to show some hospitality to yourself. Reflection, exercise, art, music—all the gifts and abilities that we have that make us human—are completely available to you now.
It is extremely important to find stress relief in times of high anxiety. Some things you can do, according to the CDC, is:
Take breaks from watching, reading, or listening to news stories, including social media. Hearing about the pandemic repeatedly can be upsetting.
Take care of your body. Take deep breaths, stretch, or meditate. Try to eat healthy, well-balanced meals, exercise regularly, get plenty of sleep, and avoid abusing alcohol and drugs.
Make time to unwind. Try to do some other activities you enjoy.
Connect with others. Talk with people you trust about your concerns and how you are feeling.
For more information on how to deal with stress, anxiety, or mental illness, please visit the CDC website for tips and resources >>
Use free time, if you can, to make healthy choices for yourself and your family—time that you normally wouldn’t have the opportunity to do so.
Taking care of your body is critical during times of stress. If you have some time on your hands to do some exercise activity, you should. This article offers a lot of information regarding exercise substitutions (if you’re no longer able to access your gym), as well as getting into some gentle yoga and other exercises at home (and for free!)
Please check out this article for more healthy exercise tips >>
Prepare for success
Success is what happens when preparation meets opportunity. If you work in hospitality and find yourself currently out of a job, now might be a good time to reflect on your career profile and start building a professional one. Start here on Grit, where we help you identify your best qualities and showcase your specialties to hiring employers—so once everything gets back to normal, you’ll be in a great place to hit the ground running.
Get started building your talent profile to prepare yourself for opportunities >>
Check back with us frequently. We will be posting useful industry updates and links to what other hospitality businesses are doing in the midst of the pandemic.
Please do your part to stay healthy, informed, and engaged—and try to use your exceptional skills and talents in the way you would at your place of hospitality employment. Make a unique meal, entertain yourself in the confines of your surroundings, be resourceful with the people and things you have on hand. Stay optimistic and mentally well, support your community, neighbors, and loved ones in any way you can. Together, we can make it through this and be resilient as individuals and as an industry.