A hospitality website has appealed for help after it struggled to list a single benefit of Brexit to the industry.
Hospitality and Catering News posted a listicle-style piece documenting how Britain’s departure from the European Union has positively impacted the industry.
But it seemingly came up short, with the editor posting a blank page and saying:
“In the interest of balanced reporting we are detailing the benefits of Brexit to the hospitality industry across the UK. To date none have been identified.”
This is just TOO GOOD.— Best for Britain (@BestForBritain) July 19, 2021
"In the interest of balanced reporting we are detailing the benefits of Brexit to the hospitality industry across the UK. To date none have been identified." ~AA https://t.co/jDdTFViIwB
In May it was reported that the hospitality sector is experiencing a recruitment crisis after many EU citizens left the UK.
Kate Nicholls, chief executive of industry body UKHospitality, told TLE many EU citizens left the UK permanently as a result of Brexit.
And she said some left for good when the pandemic started: “There are foreign workers from the sector who made the decision to go back to Europe over course of the last year.”
Fourth, a leading human resources software company for the hospitality and leisure industry, has been tracking workforce for the last few years.
A Fourth spokesperson said: “Compared to 2019 there has been a significant reduction of EU workers.
“There are more British workers than EU workers for the first time, but the size of the whole hospitality workforce is 28 per cent smaller than it was exactly one year ago.”
Lack of UK workers but EU citizens shut out by government
Almost a quarter of hospitality workers in the UK are foreign nationals, according to Ms Nicholls.
She said: “We have a large number of Eastern European, Polish, Spanish and Italian workers working in housekeeping, kitchens, restaurants and hotel managers.
“In terms of future requirements, the system the UK government has put into place is going to prevent EU citizens to fill jobs post-pandemic.
“We have got domestic unemployment in the UK, shortages of people who are available for work and it’s about making sure that hospitality is seen as an attractive sector in the future.”
Ms Nicholls said it’s “too early to tell” if positions can be filled, and advised the effects of EU citizens leaving may be seen “in a few years”.
She added: “We know from our recent survey that only 85 per cent of staff are returning after furlough, so there are 15 per cent that are not returning.
“We have a proportion of staff that are temporary or casual, but lots of students are at home now.”