Peter Schorsch hunkers down with Carol Dover, president and CEO of Florida Restaurant and Lodging Association. Before that, she served as assistant director of the Beer Industry of Florida and was Deputy Chief of Staff for Gov. Bob Martinez.
Dover describes an industry that is broken and hurting, but recovering. There is some hope, she explains, for normalcy now that Gov. Ron DeSantis has announced plans for the economy to begin to start getting back to normal.
Dover describes the new look for restaurants — staff wearing masks and gloves, hand sanitizer on the table, a more spread out environment — that blends hospitality with hospital, without looking like a hospital.
Peter describes his efforts to support local restaurants, grabbing takeout and cocktails to-go, and being inspired by the rule-following he observes as people line up, with distance, to do the same.
Dover talks about the importance of following the rules. If restaurants follow them, recovery will be much easier, she said.
Dover also explains how the lodging industry will slowly plan to reopen, with an emphasis on outdoor seating and rethinking amenities.
On employment, Dover said the industry is encouraging people to come back to work regardless of unemployment benefits that may look enticing. Those benefits are temporary, she said, while employment is not.