Chef Miguel Maestre speaks out about the crisis within the hospitality industry

‘A lot of my friends have had serious mental health issues’: Celebrity chef and RUOK? ambassador Miguel Maestre speaks out about the crisis within the hospitality industry

Celebrity chef Miguel Maestre has spoken out about the significant suicide rates within the restaurant industry. 

Speaking to TV Week, the 40-year-old revealed he has seen many colleagues and loved ones struggle with mental health. 

‘A lot of my friends have had serious mental health issues and lost their battles,’ Miguel said. 

'It breeds stress': RUOK? ambassador and celebrity chef Miguel Maestre (pictured) spoke out about suicide crisis in the hospitality industry

‘It breeds stress’: RUOK? ambassador and celebrity chef Miguel Maestre (pictured) spoke out about suicide crisis in the hospitality industry 

The RUOK? ambassador attributed the problem in part to the restaurant industry’s ‘pressure’ on workers, its intense ‘deadlines’ and the ‘isolation’ workers face due to long hours. 

‘It’s an industry that breeds stress. “Will we be busy? Are there any bookings? Will we make money?” I’ve been through it,’ he told the publication.  

The issue came to light for the general public after the tragic deaths of multiple leading names in the restaurant industry, including American chef, author and TV personality Anthony Bourdain last year.   

Tragedy: The issue came to light for the general public after the deaths of multiple leading names in the restaurant industry, including American chef, author and TV personality Anthony Bourdain (pictured) last year

Tragedy: The issue came to light for the general public after the deaths of multiple leading names in the restaurant industry, including American chef, author and TV personality Anthony Bourdain (pictured) last year

Another loss: Miguel also mourned the loss of Australian chef Justin Bull, after the man was found inside his Sydney cafe last February

Another loss: Miguel also mourned the loss of Australian chef Justin Bull, after the man was found inside his Sydney cafe last February

Miguel also mourned the loss of Australian chef Justin Bull, after he was found inside his Sydney cafe last February. 

He revealed that he and his The Living Room co-host Dr. Chris Brown had spoken to Justin at his restaurant ‘just before he passed away’.  

‘He looked normal and healthy, and that’s the thing… you never know what’s going on behind closed doors,’ Miguel said. 

Speak up: Miguel also criticised the socially enforced belief that men shouldn't talk about their feelings or issues, forcing them into 'a dark place', which they don't know how to get out of

Speak up: Miguel also criticised the socially enforced belief that men shouldn’t talk about their feelings or issues, forcing them into ‘a dark place’, which they don’t know how to get out of

Miguel also criticised the socially enforced belief that men shouldn’t speak about their feelings or issues, forcing them into ‘a dark place’, which they don’t know how to get out of.

Miguel is a long-time RUOK? advocate, which is an Australian non-profit suicide prevention organisation that encourages people to have conversations about mental health  

‘The first step to getting better is to start talking,’ he said. 

Mourning: Miguel revealed that he and his The Living Room co-host Dr. Chris Brown (right) had spoken to Justin at his restaurant 'just before he passed away'. Pictured with Julia Morris

Mourning: Miguel revealed that he and his The Living Room co-host Dr. Chris Brown (right) had spoken to Justin at his restaurant ‘just before he passed away’. Pictured with Julia Morris

It was a ‘no brainer’ for Miguel when he was given the opportunity to represent ‘his charity’ while on I’m A Celebrity… Get Me Out Of Here! 

He aims to use his platform on the show to start a conversation about mental health. 

For mental health support, please call the Lifeline 24-hour crisis support on 13 11 14 in Australia, or call Samaritans on 116 123 in the UK. 

A new platform: It was a 'no brainer' for Miguel when he was given the opportunity to represent 'his charity' while on I'm A Celebrity… Get Me Out Of Here!

A new platform: It was a ‘no brainer’ for Miguel when he was given the opportunity to represent ‘his charity’ while on I’m A Celebrity… Get Me Out Of Here!

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