Durbin Discusses Impact of Coronavirus With Darden Restaurants

WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today discussed the impact of the coronavirus pandemic with CEO and President of Darden Restaurants, Gene Lee.  On a call with Lee, Durbin asked how the pandemic will impact the restaurant industry and how the company is planning to support restaurant employees as normal operations come to a halt.

"The coronavirus pandemic will undoubtedly have a serious impact on the restaurant industry as the country changes our social norms and daily lives to fight this virus. Congress must provide employees relief, including increased paid sick leave, in order to support workers and families during this coronavirus crisis,” Durbin said.

Darden Restaurants owns and operates about 1,800 restaurants, including chains such as Olive Garden, LongHorn Steakhouse, and The Capital Grille.  The restaurant group employs roughly 190,000 people and serves nearly 400 million guests annually.  Darden has 57 restaurants and about 6,000 employees in Illinois.