Some southern Ill. restaurants closing during week due to lack of employees

Updated: May. 11, 2021 at 4:03 PM CDT
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SOUTHERN Ill. (KFVS) - Some restaurants across the Heartland are having a hard time keeping their doors open due to a lack of employees.

17th Street Barbecue in Murphysboro, Illinois has had its doors open since 1985, but are now forced to close and give its workers a break.

17th Street Bar and Grill in Marion is also closing at the beginning of the week due to being short-staffed.

“We have made the difficult decision to close Monday and Tuesday at both of our locations.”

Restaurant owner Amy Mills said in the last few weeks, not having enough staff has taken a toll on her longtime employees.

“A third of our staff has been here from nine to 22 years. And what we’re trying to do now is staff up. We need about eight to 10 people in each of our locations.”

She said although staffing remains a problem for her restaurant, they’re working on a solution to get more workers.

“We are aggressively recruiting and trying to hire, but frankly, we may hire three people, and lose one.”

For now though, Mills said she’ll use other resources and avenues within the business to keep her customers happy.

“We’re going to put our concession trailer out for lunch on those days. We did that last summer, and it was very popular and very successful. We’re also still offering catering,” she said.

Mills isn’t sure when both locations both in Murphysboro and in Marion, Illinois will reopen on Mondays and Tuesdays, but for now they are just looking for good staff.

The Bureau of Labor and Statistics report April’s unemployment rate was at 6.1 percent, which is approximately 9.8 million unemployed persons.

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