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(Jamaica Observer) – Managing director of Restaurants of Jamaica (ROJ) Mark Myers, in a video currently circulating on social media, has indicated that as a result of an over 50 per cent drop in sales because of COVID-19, ROJ was left with no alternative but to cut staff.

ROJ are the local operators of the KFC and Pizza Hut franchises in Jamaica.

“Over the past few weeks, we have seen a significant decrease in the number of customers in our restaurants and, by extension, a reduction in sales and transactions to less than half of what they used to be,” Myers said.

“These are truly challenging times, and unfortunately we face even tougher times ahead. To sustain the business, in this time of crisis, we have been cutting expenses throughout the company in all areas, at all levels, but we have tried our best to maintain all salaries despite having less available work and having to reduce working hours,” he added.

“It is with a very heavy heart that we are now faced with having to make some painful decisions that we have been trying to avoid. The reality is that due to the unexpected prolonging of this event (COVID-19), we can no longer retain the number of staff currently on our payroll, and unfortunately we will have to do some layoffs,” Myers said in his video.

While not indicating the actual number of staff members who will be sent home, the ROJ head said that within the next week operations leaders and the Human Resource Department will arrange team meetings to have detailed discussions with workers and to provide answers to all questions.

“Notwithstanding, even amidst this very difficult decision to reduce staff, we will continue to do everything we can, for as long as we can, to keep on as many of you, our valued team, as long as possible,” Myers said.

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