If you currently or until recently worked in Boston’s restaurant industry, then you know that what is allowed and not allowed changes almost daily. It’s difficult to keep track of who’s doing what, what’s working, and maybe what’s not working. At a time when the obstacles facing bars and restaurants are at their most unique and challenging since Prohibition, we need to come together, meet over coffee or beers, vent, and then, hopefully, find some solutions.
We can’t do all of that right now, of course, but we really, really need to.
Our survey, which you can complete below, is about life and livelihood in local area bars and restaurants, and what we need to make both of those things a continued possibility in the not-too-distant future. We don’t need your name or where you work if you don’t want to share that information, but we do need your insight and experience (and/or that of your friends in the service biz, who you can tell about the questionnaire).
We ultimately hope to give solutions we catch in our reportorial net a platform, and that information gathered here can be used in some plan of action, somewhere. What’s for sure is that the most important grievances and ideas won’t come from a handful of prominent restaurant owners, but rather from the people who truly power this industry—and have the most to lose when it breaks.
The survey portal will be open through Tues, Sept 22. The more information we collect, the more complete a picture we can paint of what we want, what we need, and what’s already being done to carry on. In the fall, we will follow up with everything from charts and graphs to anecdotes showing important success stories that are useful to everyone, from service workers to patrons.
Read Haley Hamilton’s Silver Dining Playbook series about hospitality industry solutions in the face of the COVID-19 pandemic
Haley is an AAN Award-winning columnist for DigBoston and Mel magazine and has contributed to publications including the Boston Globe and helped found Homicide Watch Boston. She has spearheaded and led several Boston Institute for Nonprofit Journalism investigations including a landmark multipart series about the racialized history of liquor licensing in Massachusetts, and for three years wrote the column Terms of Service about restaurant industry issues from the perspective of workers.