Should Restaurant Workers Be Considered 'Essential' In A Pandemic?
Start writing a post
Politics and Activism

I'm A Restaurant Worker But In A Pandemic, We Really Aren't That 'Essential'

Do people really need fast food during a pandemic?

I'm A Restaurant Worker But In A Pandemic, We Really Aren't That 'Essential'

During the COVID-19 pandemic, front-line workers are typically thought of as doctors, nurses, and other healthcare providers. However, high on the list of essential workers are restaurant employees and fast-food workers.

With a large portion of these employees being teenagers, is the risk really worth it?

I've worked in a restaurant since I was 16, so the trials and tribulations that come with working directly with the public are nothing new to me. However, since the COVID-19 pandemic started, I can honestly say that I've never seen anything like it in the three years that I've been in the restaurant business. Obviously, the growing pains have been horrible going from a fully functioning restaurant to carry out only, but our business hasn't slowed down one bit. It seems every customer has the same mindset: "I am the only person in this town who is dining out, so my food better be ready when I want it to be (even though I placed the order three minutes ago)."

In the past week or so, I have been yelled at, belittled, and even cussed out more times than I can count.

On top of that, customers feel the need to tell me how I could do things to be more sanitary when honestly my fellow employees and I are doing our best. Restaurants right now are doing things in accordance with what the CDC suggests. We wear masks, we change our gloves, and try to limit as much contact as possible, but please remember that we are only human and most of us are just kids. In addition to this being a huge change in how we run the business, our pay has been cut as well. Waitresses are not used to working hourly, and those who work hourly are making $2 to $4 less per hour than what they would have made normally. We do all of this to serve those in the community, and because we honestly care about our customers. I promise you, it's not for the money.

After a particularly stressful night, I started thinking to myself, "Are we really essential?"

I mean, grocery stores are open, and with the prices people pay going out to eat, they could have bought half a week's worth of groceries. I started voicing my concerns to people around me and the response I mostly got was this: Restaurants are open so that other essential workers can come get food if they don't have time to cook. OK, that sounds logical, but is it really? The way I see it is that no matter how many precautions restaurants take, there is no guarantee that one of us doesn't have the virus and that we won't spread it to others. So, not only are we more at risk for getting the virus from essential workers who have been exposed, but we are also more likely to spread the virus to those who haven't been exposed. In my opinion, cooking at home is the only way to ensure food is not contaminated by others.

It seems more of a liability to have restaurants open than to close them down until all of this is over.

Yes, restaurants will lose money, but it could potentially save thousands of young lives that have barely even begun. Our future is worth more than this temporary inconvenience.

From Your Site Articles
Report this Content

A Beginner's Wine Appreciation Course

While I most certainly do not know everything, I feel like I know more than the average 21-year-old about vino, so I wrote this beginner's wine appreciate course to help YOU navigate the wine world and drink like a pro.

White wine being poured into a glass

Keep Reading...Show less
Types of ice cream

Who doesn't love ice cream? People from all over the world enjoy the frozen dessert, but different countries have their own twists on the classic treat.

Keep Reading...Show less
Student Life

100 Reasons to Choose Happiness

Happy Moments to Brighten Your Day!

A man with a white beard and mustache wearing a hat

As any other person on this planet, it sometimes can be hard to find the good in things. However, as I have always tried my hardest to find happiness in any and every moment and just generally always try to find the best in every situation, I have realized that your own happiness is much more important than people often think. Finding the good in any situation can help you to find happiness in some of the simplest and unexpected places.

Keep Reading...Show less

Remember The True Meaning of Christmas

“Where are you Christmas? Why can’t I find you?”

A painting of the virgin Mary, the baby Jesus, and the wise men

It’s everyone’s favorite time of year. Christmastime is a celebration, but have we forgotten what we are supposed to be celebrating? There is a reason the holiday is called Christmas. Not presentmas. Not Santamas. Not Swiftmas. Christmas.

boy standing in front of man wearing santa claus costume Photo by __ drz __ on Unsplash

What many people forget is that there is no Christmas without Christ. Not only is this a time to spend with your family and loved ones, it is a time to reflect on the blessings we have gotten from Jesus. After all, it is His birthday.

Keep Reading...Show less
Golden retriever sat on the sand with ocean in the background
Photo by Justin Aikin on Unsplash

Anyone who knows me knows how much I adore my dog. I am constantly talking about my love for her. I attribute many of my dog's amazing qualities to her breed. She is a purebred Golden Retriever, and because of this I am a self-proclaimed expert on why these are the best pets a family could have. Here are 11 reasons why Goldens are the undisputed best dog breed in the world.

Keep Reading...Show less

Subscribe to Our Newsletter

Facebook Comments