Tony’s Mexican restaurant in Houston struggles to hire employees and fill vacancies as the pandemic continues

HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) — Business is good at Tony’s Mexican restaurant.

The restaurant has been a staple of delicious Mexican cuisine for 30 years near 610 North Loop and Ella Boulevard.

As we enter another year of the COVID-19 pandemic, managers reported having more difficulty filling vacancies.

“There are a lot of people who left because of the pandemic,” assistant coach Antonio Vega said.

Vega said many employees quit, putting a strain on the employees still working there.

“It puts a lot of pressure on the employees because we need help,” Vega said. “There’s a lot of work to do, and we don’t want to overwork everyone.”

Tony’s Mexican Restaurant has two locations, including one on Katy Highway. Vega said it takes 110 employees among cooks, hostesses and servers to properly run their location on Ella.

They currently have 87 employees and he said it was difficult to find new workers to fill the positions.

“They come and apply, and there are a lot of people who don’t show up,” he said.

Vega said they pay more money for various jobs and offer health insurance to bring people in and hire them.

Managers said they were also willing to pay for GED and ESL (English as a Second Language) classes to help employees further their education, but they say that hasn’t helped either.

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