Press Releases

HISTORIC PRESS RELEASE : Chancellor Gordon Brown launches plan for 40,000 New Deal jobs in the Hospital industry [April 1998]

The press release issued by HM Treasury on 27 April 1998.

An initiative to use the New Deal to support a new network of training centres for the hotel, catering and leisure industries was launched today by Chancellor Gordon Brown. The New Deal will allow the hospitality industry to take on and train around 40,000 unemployed young people over the next few years.

Welcoming the biggest New Deal employers agreement yet, Mr Brown said:

“From today, a new chapter is opened in the New Deal. Here is a practical example of how central and local Government and employers can work together to tackle the skill shortages that have held this country back for too long. The economy as a whole will never be at its best unless we unlock the potential of all our people, and I appeal to employers to become part of this national crusade to ensure that opportunity is open not just to a few but to everyone.”

Paymaster General Geoffrey Robinson said:

“The New Deal is proving the smart solution for business. The hospitality industry have worked with us to make the best use of the New Deal to address their own specific needs. Many other employers are doing the same. I invite all employers to take a close look at the New Deal, to see what it can do for them.”

The Chancellor and the Paymaster General were speaking during a visit to a training centre in Kentish Town, North London, which the industry has developed as a pilot project, in conjunction with Camden Borough Council and other partners. With the support available under the New Deal, a network of centres can now be extended to every region of the country. The centres will provide places for around 40,000 young people who have been unemployed for at least 6 months, making this the largest single employer commitment to the New Deal so far.

The industry estimates that of their annual turnover of 350,000 staff, only 6 per cent can be met with suitably qualified staff. The 750 Pounds training grant available under the New Deal will help meet training costs, with the 60 Pounds a week subsidy helping to provide new jobs for the successful trainees.

David Batts, Managing Director of Radisson Edwardian Hotels and Chairman of the London Tourist Board, said:

“The hospitality industry is ideally placed to take on New Deal recruits and to train them for real jobs and careers in hotels and catering. These recruits need basic training away from the direct hotel and catering environment, before being faced with the fast pace of business”.

Jeremy Logie, Chief Executive of the British Hospitality Association, added: “We are delighted that the Chancellor is showing such a strong interest in what is a significant industry initiative.

Minister for Employment, Andrew Smith said:

“I welcome the enthusiastic support of the hospitality industry for the New Deal from firms such as Granada, Stakis and Whitbread. It is a mark of confidence in the New Deal by employers who are making a substantial commitment and opening up so many new opportunities for young unemployed people. Through the New Deal, they will get motivated recruits who can get help with relevant training to help solve the industry’s skill shortages.”