The president of the Business Confederation of Hospitality of Spain, José Luis Yzuel, apologized for an intervention in which he ironized about the working hours in his sector, saying that "all our lives in hospitality we have done half a day: from 12 to 12".
In an intervention in the program 'Everything is a lie' collected by Servimedia, Yzuel said that it was a "joke" and a "blunder", although he defended that "of course" you can work a twelve-hour day because the law "can allow it" if the company compensates the worker.
The representative of the hoteliers acknowledged having "screwed up" in "an environment of seriousness" because his intervention was part of a conference organized by the Confederation of Small and Medium Enterprises (Cepyme).
Yzuel said he felt "disgusted" and "sad" because his intervention "affects everyone" who is part of the hospitality industry. "I will have to be more careful, not to make jokes and to speak seriously as we usually do," he said.
The businessman wanted to frame his comment in that a "longer" conversation in which he was defending that "you can work 10 hours and 12 hours when it touches high season" because the legislation "allows it". However, he stressed that "you have to compensate those who work, you have to respect their agreement, if you can pay them generously and, if not, compensate them with holidays and vacations."
"I know companies that give two or three months of vacation because they have a very complete high season, complicated and in which it is very difficult to incorporate people and these people are happy and accept it," he added.
Yzuel complained that in the hospitality industry they are "continuously marked" and defended that "the vast majority of companies comply with the rules and agreements" and these are the ones that their employers defend. However, he acknowledged that "there are some" that publish "blushing" job offers and asked waiters not to be happy about a job change, since there are "a lot of serious companies that comply with the standard."
On the lack of labor that the sector has been demanding, the representative of the employer stressed that the problem is a "perfect storm" with several factors such as a late incorporation of young people into the labor market or an increase in labor costs. In this sense, Yzuel pointed out that in 2022 the costs of the sector grew by 12.5%, above any other.
He also claimed that "competent" people are needed and that "know the trade", something that is "very difficult" to achieve and as a last element mentioned that "what has changed" society "goes against us" because "nobody likes to work on Saturdays or Sundays or split shift. "