The newly appointed chairman of Springboard London's Advisory Board, Stephen Kyjak-Lane, has called on the hospitality industry to help reduce the increasing unemployment figures.
"The most worrying aspect of the latest rise in the jobless totals for the UK is the unacceptable increase in unemployment for the 18- to 24-year-old sector," he said, following the announcement that the number of people out of work increased by 48,000 to 2.67 million in the three months to December 2011. "We are leaving our talent pool of the future in limbo."
The latest figures from the Office for National Statistics (ONS) showed that the unemployment rate for 16-to 24-year-olds had jumped to 22.2%, while the number of job vacancies rose to 476,000 in the three months to January
Kyjak-Lane, who is the general manager of the Lancaster London hotel, said hospitality could be a crucial part of the solution to youth unemployment because it continued to expand and create job opportunities and sustainable careers.
"Springboard welcomes candidates from whatever background and ability: those looking for full-time, part-time or casual employment," he explained. "The Springboard Charity has multiple programmes to assist job-seekers into paid employment and Springboard's careers programmes are open to people of all ages."
The hospitality industry is the UK's fifth-largest industry, employing 7% of all working adults and contributing 8% of the UK's GDP (£114b). The sector employs more than two million people and is predicted to expand by 125,000 by 2017.
By Janet Harmer
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