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The Caterer

Chefs deserve proper work-life balance too

24 August 2006
Chefs deserve proper work-life balance too

May I say three cheers to J Kerr ("Why are F&B staff treated so poorly?", Caterer, 17 August, page 15).

We have watched our son - a dedicated, skilled and hard-working chef - contend with as much as 80 hours per week, days of up to 18 hours with no split, and working numerous days at a stretch due to staff shortages and the regular demands of the high-class restaurants he has worked in.

The rewards? No hourly rate of pay, a restricted social life, having to drive home in an exhausted state or live in unacceptable accommodation - and, to top it off, often being the victim of, or witness to, horrendous outbursts from equally exhausted, stressed and explosive senior chefs.

Yes, he does have a choice, but it's unfortunate that it's either accept the conditions as they are, or leave the industry.

I would imagine that, were the diners in these establishments aware of the inhumane demands made on the chefs, their exquisitely executed meals would just not taste so sweet.

Let's start a campaign - chefs deserve a work-life balance too.

J Rollinson
By e-mail

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