Some Acadiana restaurant owners struggle to find employees willing to work

Acadia Parish

Crowley, La. (KLFY) As COVID-19 restrictions continue to be loosened, businesses are beginning to return to normal capacity, however, owners say they are struggling to find employees to work.

While jobs are spread through the community, some businesses are being forced to close early or shut down completely because they don’t have enough employees to meet the demand.

“The restaurants are really struggling to put people on the floor and stay there,” Sheryl Bartlett said.

Barlett is the owner of Burger Zone, in Crowley, who said she had to close down early and reduce her hours because of the employees. She said the employees who have stayed and continued working, are like family to her.

“I don’t understand, it’s been that way the whole time, it has been, but it’s worse,” Barlett said.

She said during the pandemic, Burger Zone had to close for over a month and she lost several employees who never returned to work.

However, despite being back open, she said it’s worse now than before with finding people who want to work.

“I don’t know if it’s them not wanting to work because they’re getting free money, but it’s a problem for all of our restaurants and I’m sure other businesses also,” Barlett said.

For the past several months, Barlett said she has hired people who work for a few days and quit. She said other businesses and restaurants in Crowley are also facing the same issue, preventing some from even opening.

Barlett has been in business for the past 39 years and takes pride in her business. “It’s heartbreaking-” she said as she has to reduce her business hours. She said she has been able to hire more people and she’s hopeful they will stay with the team.

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