Portugal’s restaurant bosses threaten hunger strike if Marcelo doesn’t deliver

Hundreds of desperate restaurant bosses, chefs, waiters, and many others connected to walks of life that feel ‘forgotten’ by the government in the maelstrom of the pandemic crisis demonstrated outside parliament yesterday – threatening further forms of action if their plight isn’t addressed.

One possible tactic outlined is a hunger strike by restaurateurs if President Marcelo doesn’t manage to organise a meeting with the government.

Explain reports, the ‘Bread & Water’ movement (so-called because its members have been reduced to living practically on bread and water) has an audience with the head of State today.

Organisers see it as “a light at the end of the tunnel”, says Correio da Manhã.

Bread & Water spokesperson João Gouveia stressed: “we don’t want to take more drastic measures…”

Yesterday’s protest was always planned to be ‘peaceful’: a cry for help, dialogue, understanding.

The reality is that without extra support, the sector risks putting 100,000 out of work as businesses will have no option but to declare bankruptcy.

João Gouveia described the ‘hunger strike’ idea as “a rehearsal for what hunger will be like in Portugal” if people within his industry are not helped.

CM reports that it spoke to a number of restaurateurs taking part in yesterday’s protest who described the impossibility of accessing financial support offered this far (even as limited as it is).

The paper has asked the planning ministry when money will arrive for businesses that have asked for it, “but hasn’t received a reply”.

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