Accommodations and food services industry received only 9% of PPP loan dollars

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WASHINGTON, D.C. — Wednesday, April 29 at 11:00 a.m. ET prominent chefs and leaders of the Independent Restaurant Coalition’s “Save Restaurants” movement will host a national public video conference with thousands of small restaurants across the nation to call on Congress to take urgent new actions to ensure the nation’s 500,000 independent restaurants and the 11 million people they employ are able to survive the Coronavirus pandemic. Chefs José Andrés, Nina Compton, Rosa Garcia, Naomi Pomeroy, Andrew Zimmern and several other members of the Independent Restaurant Coalition (IRC) — will unveil the coalition’s call for a restaurant stabilization fund.

The call to action comes after Congress passed an additional $484 billion for the Paycheck Protection Program without making any of the changes necessary to allow local restaurants to take advantage of that funding.

Save Restaurants: Key Points

The IRC recently conducted a survey with the James Beard Foundation, which found that even after the first round of PPP was distributed to businesses across the country, 80% of independent restaurant owners were not certain they would be able to reopen after the crisis. Despite accounting for 60% of job losses in March, the accommodations and food services industry received only 9% of PPP loan dollars. Restaurants are uniquely affected by this crisis: according to the National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER), restaurants only have a 30% chance of staying open if the COVID-19 crisis lasts four months – that’s lower than any other industry.

This is made worse by the reality that even when businesses are permitted to reopen, social distancing guidelines and public hesitation is projected to cut revenue by 50%, making insolvency a reality for hundreds of thousands of  independent restaurants and the elimination of millions of jobs.

And thousands of other restaurant owners from the Independent Restaurant Coalition

WHAT: Public briefing and Q&A session to urge Congress to create a fund for independent restaurants.

WHEN: Wednesday, April 29 at 11:00 a.m. ET