There are almost 1,000,000 unemployed young people aged 16-24 as reported by House of Commons last week. This represents a staggering 21% unemployment rate.
The BHA is committed fighting the youth unemployment through our campaign Inspiring the next generation with The Big Hospitality Conversation - our industry’s biggest job creation drive to offer opportunities to unemployed young people in the UK. Hospitality is uniquely suited to employ young people and get them on the first rung of a rewarding career ladder. The Hospitality industry currently employs 2.7 million people in the UK which is 10% of the total employment. Not many industries can say they have created almost one-third of all new jobs in Britain over the past two years, with a further potential to create 300,000 new jobs by 2020.
In June this year, we announced that British Hospitality Association together with 1,200 industry representatives, had joined forces to create over 30,000 new job opportunities for young people. It was presented at The British Hospitality & Tourism Summit 2013 to Mark Hoban MP, Minister of State for Employment.
We are delighted that The Prince of Wales applauded BHA members and our work. You can read the letter from HRH here.
Video: British Hospitality & Tourism Summit 2013 - Stephen Howard, Chief Executive, Business in the Community and Mark Hoban MP, Minister of State for Employment
There are more than 240,000 establishments in the hospitality industry, of which over 80% are small and medium business. If each of these businesses would pledge to create at least one job, apprenticeship or work placement we would be able to cut youth unemployment rate by a quarter. It is time for our industry to help to fight the unemployment in the UK. Please join us and your colleagues this autumn at the next Big Conversation events on 9th and 15th October.
Over and above, I am proud to announce our plan for 2014 with 24 Big Hospitality Conversation events across the country. We have also increased our ambitions and doubled our current target to reach a total of 90,000 jobs, apprenticeships and work placements in hospitality by 2015.
However, we need each and every one of you to get involved in this exciting initiative to fundamentally change the life of thousands of young people in Britain.