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Operators urged to lobby MPs and boost signatories ahead of minister for hospitality debate

21 December 2020 by
Operators urged to lobby MPs and boost signatories ahead of minister for hospitality debate

Operators are being urged to lobby their local MP and continue to encourage signatures for the minister for hospitality petition after a date was set for the debate in Parliament.

MPs are due to discuss the potential position on 11 January 2021 and industry leaders are calling on their colleagues to keep up the momentum and pressure on the government ahead of the debate.

They agree that the creation of the minister for hospitality role will be the opportunity for the industry to be properly recognised in the corridors of power as the jobs juggernaut and significant wealth creator that it is.

UKHospitality chief executive Kate Nicholls said: "We need to act as our own cheerleader and present an unambiguously united and vocal front. This is an opportunity to highlight how much we mean to our staff and our customers and a chance to show the overwhelming support we have across the country."

She added that as the debate comes just before a review of the tier system it will be "an open goal for us to hammer home the importance of hospitality and ensure that we are totally at the forefront of Parliament's mind".

Mowgli founder Nisha Katona said that the position would allow the industry to broker "sensible, quick and collaborative solutions".

She said: "Unmoored and staggering, never has an industry so needed ministerial representation. A minister for hospitality would form that crucial link in the chain between government and operators, decisively dragging our industry out of the mire and helping hereafter to yoke us hopefully and purposefully, to an economy straining to recover."

The industry was now "vulnerable and weak" with a desperate need for a focal point, said chef Tom Kerridge. "Any industry that employs so many people and is integral as the engine room for pulling this country out of the depths of coronavirus, Brexit and the recession, must have its own focal point that pierces to the heart of Westminster," he added.

The campaign has now amassed 164,000 signatures. Even though the debate is secured the industry is being urged to continue to lobby local MPs and ask all those who haven't yet to sign the petition.

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