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Melbourne’s hospitality sector ‘broken’ by harsh lockdown

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A Melbourne restauranteur says lockdown has “broken” businesses as harsh restrictions continue to cripple the city’s hospitality sector.

A Melbourne restauranteur says lockdown measures have "broken" businesses as harsh restrictions continue to cripple the city's hospitality sector.

Speaking to Today, Lucas Restaurants CEO Chris Lucas, who owns famous restaurant Chin Chin, said lockdowns continued to ravage the industry, admitting the sector was on the brink of collapse.

"We're broken," he said.

"166 or 167 days now into a devastating lockdown that never seems to be able to end.

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"It doesn't matter what positivity we try and engender amongst my staff and our family, our kids, our community, but every time we get off the mat we seem to be dealt a blow.

"I'm not so sure honestly how many more blows Melbourne can take.

"I really feel this time it's been so impactful, so devastating in every aspect.

"Mentally, psychologically, confidence-wise, obviously financially for the state, but I really do feel for Melbourne."

Mr Lucas said a "pall of sadness" had swept the city, with hospitality business owners grieving the devastating effects of the lockdown.

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The restauranteur explained the damage would not just be a mere few weeks over the course of the lockdown, but years of hardship as businesses attempt to rebuild.

"I think the damage is going to be long-lasting, not just to the industry but the city," he said.

"The effects are going to be felt for years to come. There is a lot of post-traumatic mental damage being done to people.

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"People last week were in tears. My staff, we're breaking down just at the news that we were going to go into a lockdown yet again.

"I think there's a real frustration but there's a real anger brewing in the city now."

Source: 9News

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