Washington, D.C.– Today, Sean Kennedy, executive vice president of Public Affairs for the National Restaurant Association released the following statement on the introduction of the Real Economic Support That Acknowledges Unique Restaurant Assistance Needed to Survive (RESTAURANTS) Act of 2021:

“The unified RESTAURANTS Act of 2021 is a light at the end of a long, dark winter for independent, chain, and franchise restaurants that have been most impacted by the pandemic. While many other industries have started to recover, the restaurant industry finished last year in a double-dip recession, and with 2.5 million fewer jobs. These grants will put even the hardest-hit restaurants on the path to economic survival.

“Restaurants were the first industry to be shut down by the states and within days, we asked Congress for an industry-specific fund that would help sustain our uniquely social businesses, regardless of the sign on the door. For nearly a year, the Association, our members, and hundreds of thousands of our grassroots advocates have shared our experiences with Congress. And they listened.

“The bill introduced today finally reflects the unified view that all small restaurants should have access to relief—regardless of whether they are an independent or a franchise of a regional chain. We appreciate the strong bipartisan leadership of Sens. Roger Wicker and Kyrsten Sinema and Reps. Earl Blumenauer and Brian Fitzpatrick, in creating and improving this bill. Their willingness to work with us has strengthened it and ensures that the support it creates will reach into every community across the country.

“The foodservice industry is the nation’s second-largest private sector employer and has an economic impact of more than $2.5 trillion dollars annually. To once again be the engine that the economy relies on, our members need the help that only the RESTAURANTS Act can provide. We look forward to working together with Congress the ensure the support needed to pass this bill.”



Founded in 1919, the National Restaurant Association is the leading business association for the restaurant industry, which comprises 1 million restaurant and foodservice outlets and a workforce of 15.6 million employees. We represent the industry in Washington, D.C., and advocate on its behalf. We sponsor the industry's largest trade show (National Restaurant Association Show); leading food safety training and certification program (ServSafe); unique career-building high school program (the NRAEF's ProStart). For more information, visit Restaurant.org and find us on Twitter @WeRRestaurants, Facebook and YouTube.

Contact: Vanessa Sink (202) 331-5900