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Tell us more about who the Alliance is.

The New York City Hospitality Alliance (The Alliance) is a membership-based not-for-profit association founded in 2012 to represent and serve restaurant and nightlife establishments throughout the five boroughs. Pre-COVID, home to more than 24,000 eating and drinking establishments, employing 325,000 people, our industry is vital to the economic footprint and social fabric of New York City.

“It is inspiring to see how our restaurants/bars have pivoted their business to reach their customers, serve NYers and support their employees.”

Members of The Alliance gain exclusive access to operational guidance; up-to-date information on the ever-changing regulations and trends; invites to industry-only trainings, educational and social events; and a suite of customized services to help their businesses save time and money. Restaurant and nightlife establishments that join the New York City Hospitality Alliance become part of our tight-knit community and ensures our industry is represented and served.

What are some main roles that the Alliance takes on for the greater NYC hospitality community?

The Alliance bridges the gap between the hospitality industry, government and the press. We advocate for a fair and equitable regulatory environment that removes barriers to entrepreneurship and job creation.  We seek to reduce unnecessary regulatory burdens, streamline the permit and licensing process, cut the red tape, and represent the industry’s perspective on proposed laws, regulations, trends and other matters impacting restaurant and nightlife establishments.

How has this pivoted throughout the pandemic?

The pandemic has shone a unique light on the importance of The Alliance and the role that we play in our city’s hospitality industry. Not only are we fighting for the survival of our restaurants and nightlife establishments day-in and day-out by advocating on their behalf in the halls of government, but we are providing vital, accurate, up-to-date information for our members to keep them aware and in compliance in this new, ever-changing environment. As a city-focused association, we have really leveraged our local relationships more than ever before to build and join various coalitions. Our advocacy has also grown to focus on federal policies as well like fighting for changes in the Paycheck Protection Program and continuing to fight to enact the RESTAURANTS Act, a structured revitalization fund to help pay for rent, payroll, vendor expenses and more. The COVID-19 pandemic has been incredibly challenging for our industry, and we continue to listen to our members and fight for policies that ease as many burdens as possible and support their future during these trying times.

What are some important lessons you’ve learned from your food industry partners during Covid-era hospitality?

We learned about the strength and creativity of our industry. It is inspiring to see how our restaurants/bars have pivoted their business to reach their customers, serve NYers and support their employees. It has also been a huge learning experience when we speak with our hospitality service provider members. They see the industry at a different angle and had to pivot their businesses as well to keep up with the current times.

Are there any specific projects you’re working on that you’d like to highlight?

Well, of course working with Boston Beer on the Hops for Hospitality to help raise money towards our advocacy and support efforts. Some of our ongoing efforts include helping restaurant operators navigate these difficult times by answering any questions, hosting seminars/trainings, sharing important information, and more. We are always advocating for our industry from a city, state and federal level. We are constantly fighting for policies that will help our beloved small businesses not only during the pandemic, but we are also coming up with and fighting for policies that will help restaurants survive (and hopefully thrive) well after the pandemic. We constantly have new projects in the works, so keep up with us by joining our newsletter!

What are some things NYC citizens can do right now to support the city’s food scene?

The most important thing is to go out and support your local restaurants and tip well if you can. If you choose to order delivery, try to order directly from the restaurant if possible. We also encourage you to tip your delivery workers in cash. We also ask that guests are patient with restaurant workers and follow all COVID-19 protocols at all times in order to keep everyone safe. As New Yorkers, we are in this together and we need to make sure we help our small businesses bounce back so our city can recover.

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