A staffing agency that hires nannies and chefs for ultra-wealthy families at 6-figure salaries says it's been 'inundated' by laid-off restaurant workers desperate for work
- Chefs and waiters that have been laid off due to the coronavirus are looking to ultra-wealthy families as possible new employers, a New York-based staffing agency told Business Insider.
- A record-shattering 3.28 million Americans filed for unemployment benefits in the week ending March 2 alone, as authorities closed nonessential businesses to slow the spread of the virus.
- Since being identified in Wuhan, China, in December, the novel coronavirus has infected at least 511,000 people and killed over 23,000 across the globe.
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The staffs of high-end restaurants who can't work from home through the coronavirus crisis have found a new way to make ends meet as their workplaces shutter and lay them off at record rates - working in the home of a local ultra-wealthy family.
A New York-based staffing agency that hires butlers, chefs, nannies, and personal assistants for ultra-wealthy families across the globe says it's been overwhelmed with calls from recently laid off hospitality workers looking for new jobs. Restaurants across the country have been forced to convert to take-out only or close entirely and hotels stand empty as authorities ask Americans to practice social distancing to slow the spread of the novel coronavirus.
David Youdovin, the CEO of Hire Society, told Business Insider that his firm has placed over a dozen people in new roles this month alone. Some of the openings Youdovin filled were posted before coronavirus outbreaks took hold in the United States, while other positions were newly created to accommodate families who now find themselves spending more time at home.
"It's a defensive industry and a 100% controlled one," Youdovin told Business Insider. "Our clients are quasi-recession-proof. If the market tanks dramatically, they are still fine and will always need someone to help them manage their households, serve them their dinner, or cook them their dinner."
Just two weeks after the World Health Organization declared the novel coronavirus outbreak a pandemic, restaurants, coffee shops, gyms, fitness studios, and cultural institutions have already begun to lay off employees. Some cities forced the closures while others shuttered voluntarily as customers embrace social distancing in an attempt to slow the virus' spread. Air travel has also ground to a halt, leaving airline and hotel employees vulnerable to layoffs as well. A record-shattering 3.28 million Americans filed for unemployment benefits in the week ending March 2 alone.
Still, Hire Society is looking to fill dozens of open positions in New York City, the Hamptons, and Palm Beach, Florida, Hire Society recruiter Giuliana Bianchini told Business Insider. Several of the roles come with full health insurance and paid time off in addition to six-figure salaries - benefits that restaurant workers affected by the coronavirus layoffs likely did not have in their former roles.
Some of the firm's clients have also begun to require that new employees quarantine themselves for 14 days before starting work, Bianchini told Business Insider. Some families are even offering bonuses to staff who are willing to sequester themselves with the family between shifts.
New York and Florida, two of Hire Society's largest markets, are also home to two of the largest outbreaks of the novel coronavirus in the country. Out of the over 1,100 confirmed coronavirus deaths in the United States, as of Thursday, 385 occurred in New York State and 28 were in Florida. New York is now considered the epicenter of the country's outbreak, and Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis has blamed his state's outbreak on New Yorkers traveling to Florida despite refusing to close his state's beaches amid widespread Spring Break parties that disregarded CDC guidelines for social distancing.
Since being identified in Wuhan, China, in December, the novel coronavirus has infected 511,000 people and killed over 23,000 across the globe.
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