Reports that the government has moved away from a £30,000 minimum salary threshold for EU migrants coming to work in hospitality post-Brexit, have been welcomed by the industry.
A letter from home secretary Sajid Javid to the Migration Advisory Committee reportedly urges the dropping of the proposed threshold, instead suggesting that companies would be required to pay "the going rate".
Kate Nicholls, CEO of UKHospitality, said: "Such a recommendation would be positive and pragmatic, while demonstrating that the home secretary has been listening to our concerns about the £30,000 minimum salary threshold. Such a threshold would make many crucial, hard to fill roles in hospitality unavailable to EU workers.
"Any future migration policy must focus on the needs and fortunes of the wider economy, rather than focusing on individuals. Hospitality is a key economic driver but to keep growing will need to employ non-British workers in many different roles. It is vital that we also have a separate route for semi-skilled workers."
The industry had spoken out repeatedly about the potential impact of such a cap, which had looked to brand hospitality as ‘low-skilled'. Research showed the impact could have excluded 90% of hospitality's EU workforce, creating a shortfall that would have required up to 900,000 new workers to be found each year.
An industry in crisis, part one:
An industry in crisis, part one: Why are we sleepwalking into a staffing catastrophe?
Staff shortages have plagued the industry for years, but with the prospect of Brexit and tighter immigration laws, operators are looking for the government to recognise the vital role hospitality plays in the economy. Emma Lake reports With five months[...]