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Fund formed to provide $500 in aid to restaurant workers in need

The relief program has been formed by the National Restaurant Association’s Educational Foundation in collaboration with leading industry suppliers.
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Photograph: Shutterstock

Restaurant employees who suffer a financial hit from the COVID-19 pandemic will be able starting April 2 to request a one-time payment of $500 from a relief fund being set up by the National Restaurant Association Educational Foundation (NRAEF).

The funds will be provided on a first come, first served basis to help impacted workers pay for rent, groceries, medical care, utilities, transportation, child care and other fundamental expenses.

The money for the Restaurant Employee Relief Fund (RERF) will come from donations. Founding partners of the fund include PepsiCo, Uber Eats, Constellation Brands, Moet Hennessy USA, Ecolab, Cargill, Boston Beer Co., Shift4 Payments, P&G Professional, The Elliot Group, Davis Wright Tremaine LLP and the Light Foundation.

Celebrity chef and TV star Guy Fieri is serving as spokesperson for RERF.

One hundred percent of donations will be redistributed to workers in need, the NRAEF said.

“Early estimates indicate that as many as 5 million to 7 million restaurant workers may lose their jobs due to the COVID-19 crisis, and many already have,” NRAEF President Rob Gifford said in a statement. “In the face of this pandemic, we are asking the nation to join us in protecting vulnerable restaurant workers through your generous financial support.”

Individuals and businesses are encouraged to make a donation via the fund’s website, RERF.US

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