Representing a collective of more than 2,500 Bermudians employed by local restaurants, the Restaurant Division of the Bermuda Chamber of Commerce launched a new campaign designed to boost public support for the sector.

The #SaveOurRestaurantsBDA campaign features a video with “a number of voices from the industry issuing a call to action”.

A spokesperson said today: “Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, some of the Island’s culinary establishments have closed their doors; many others have seen a loss in sales anywhere between 50 percent to 80 percent over the last year.  
Since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, local eateries have been hard hit due to fewer residents having the capacity or means to dine out,” the spokesperson added.

“With more than 2,500 Bermudians employed in the local hospitality industry, including chefs, waiters, hostesses, bartenders and managers, there is a growing number of locals unemployed and eager to get back to work doing what they love.

“The restaurant industry in Bermuda is currently in a state of emergency due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

“After a full year of restrictions curtailing operations and the overall decline in patrons, some restaurants have already had to close their doors, with others just barely getting by.

“We couldn’t sit back, do nothing and watch the Island’s one-of-a-kind food service industry disappear. That’s why we’re launching this campaign – to encourage patrons who can afford to do so, to eat out, while also lobbying for greater relief and support from landlords, banks, insurers and Government to help us weather this storm.

“Over the next five weeks, restaurant workers will be sharing their stories and encouraging constructive dialogue from the community through the #SaveOurRestaurantsBDA Campaign.”

Here are a few ways the public can show their support:

  • 1 Patronise local restaurants. During ‘Work@Home’ periods, restaurants encourage people to order take-out from their favourite local eateries. When it’s safe to do so, the Island’s culinary establishments look forward to welcoming diners back into their restaurants and are doing their part to adhere to Government regulations and protocols to keep people healthy and safe.
  • 2 Buy gift cards. Another way you can support Bermuda’s restaurant industry is by buying restaurant gift cards for your family, friends, colleagues and staff. These are valid for a full year and help to keep businesses’ lights on and food on the table for workers’ families.
  • 3 Engage on social media. Whenever you eat out in the days, weeks and months to come, post on social media with the #SaveOur RestaurantsBDA hashtag. This shows the restaurant industry they have your support, as they continue to rally to rescue Bermuda’s food service industry.

In closing, the spokesperson said: “We’re thankful for any and all support we can get at this time.

“We know so many on the Island are struggling at this time, but we hope together as a community we can get through this devastating crisis better and more unified than ever before.”