Operators are calling on the Government to to introduce fully-funded apprenticeships for 19 to 24-year-olds in order to address youth unemployment and offer real opportunities for young people.
The recommendation forms part of a number of suggestions made by the Association of Licensed Multiple Retailers (ALMR) in response to a parliamentary committee inquiry into apprenticeships.
At the moment 16 to 18-year-olds are eligible for full funding, while 19 to 24-year-olds get half of their training paid for. The ALMR is calling for full funding for all young people.
ALMR strategic affairs director Kate Nicholls said: "Our industry greatly values apprentices. Properly configured apprenticeships offer robust, transferable skills, which are beneficial to both employee and employer. However, we would urge the government to listen to employers - like our members - to ensure apprenticeships are responsive and fit for purpose to help businesses to develop their workforce."
According to the ALMR the bar and pub/restaurant sector employs more than half a million people and last year generated one in 10 of all new jobs. It said that training one person to work in a pub or bar - including teaching them the full legal and regulatory framework - amounts to an investment of £1,000 pa.
The ALMR said that for this to continue more support from the Government is required.
Other recommendations in the ALMR's written response to the Business, Innovation and Skills committee inquiry include:
A proper focus on developing workplace and business skills in publicly-funded apprenticeship schemes for the hospitality sector, as opposed to just focussing on participants gaining a qualification.
More funding for over-25s, particularly people without qualifications or those that haven't been through further education
Small businesses to be offered a bonus each time they take on an apprentice - not just a one-off bonus
The Government to examine further ways to cut red tape for small business around apprenticeships
By James Stagg
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