As hospitality businesses continue to battle with acute people and skills shortages, encouraging more people to look at developing their career’s within hospitality is one tactic being deployed. Campaigns of this type aim to change perceptions of long hours, poor pay, and poor conditions.
Thankfully there are a great many hospitality businesses that are model employers, they care about their people, pay them well, treat them well, provide good training and the opportunity to develop their career.
Unfortunately, there are others that fuel negative perceptions by treating people so badly it warrants headline news across all mainstream media.
This morning one such headline, written by Gabriella Bennett features in The Times – Shaken staff lift lid on ‘hell’ Kitchin – Ex-employees have told of physical abuse and harassment at the top restaurant group.
The article in The Times is behind a paywall so access is limited, but one quick Google search will provide countless alternative options with free to read access, as always.
There is no need to repeat all of the allegations here, where various members of the team including Tom Kitchin, are accused of long term historic bullying. Countless reports are easily found and it seems that for many years toxic behaviour towards colleagues has been the norm including sexual harassment of waitresses. If you want the full list of misdemeanours The Times and The Guardian and others have them.
In The Times, a spokesperson for Tom Kitchin restaurants suggests a defence of the behaviour alluding to it as “traditional”. Also, in The Guardian an ex-employee is quoted saying: “All of these chefs and front-of-house professionals were taught that through pain, suffering and sacrifice, you can get to greatness.” An astonishing insight that the allegations imply were applied to employees.
This Times story (paywall, but 2 stories free if you register) has corroborated testimony by hugely brave individuals of the environment in @tomkitchin‘s restaurants. Respect to @palebackwriter for the reporting here and getting this out. https://t.co/AxCRuQnKbf
— Jay Rayner (@jayrayner1) July 3, 2021
Social media is now awash with the news, and as it spreads others claiming to have worked with Tom Kitchin restaurants are emerging with first hand claims that back up what is already being reported.
The litany of allegations is disturbing, anyone that had to endure such treatment or witness it has been harmed, and many have sought mental counselling as a consequence.
When hospitality is desperately looking to alter perceptions of what it is like to work within, Tom Kitchen and others in his senior management team that now stand accused need to present a robust and transparent defence to their accusers, or leave the industry for good, and the good of it.
News from the hospitality and catering industry is also being featured extensively in our Facebook and twitter social media accounts with the opportunity to engage with others in hospitality and share your views.
Hospitality & Catering News: Tom Kitchin feeds anti-hospitality perceptions via claims of bullying and sexual harassment. – 3 July 2021 – Tom Kitchin feeds anti-hospitality perceptions via claims of bullying and sexual harassment.
Copyright: All content in Hospitality & Catering News is protected by copyright