AN UPDATE FROM SEAT AT THE TABLE
January 11th 2021
Thank you all so much for your support over the last 5 weeks. A number of MPs including Catherin McKinnell (MP for Newcastle; who led yesterday’s debate in Westminster Hall) unanimously spoke in favour of increased support for the industry and many supported the notion for a Minister for Hospitality. Following the debate, it is our hope that this will be recommended to Prime Minister Boris Johnson who will hold the ultimate responsibility in making the decision. We will continue to share voices across #seatatthetable and we would encourage you to continue sharing yours! We can make our voices louder by increasing signatories on the petition so please keep sharing, supporting and signing (here). As an industry we are resilient and we are full of energy so let’s push on.... this is only the beginning! Huge thanks from the #seatatthetable team.
We are a group of young hospitality professionals who were encouraged to start a movement to drive support for the hospitality industry.
In parliament, representation for hospitality is currently split between two crowded government departments: the department for business, energy and industrial strategy and the department for digital, culture, media and sport. As the UK's 3rd largest employer responsible for 3 million jobs directly and a further 1.8 million indirectly, our industry needs a clear and strong voice.
This year especially we have seen many examples of poorly thought out and disjointed thinking. Many of the restriction challenges we have faced might have been avoided if our representation in government had operational experience and a deeper understanding of the sector.
Our campaign showcases a broad range of hospitality venues throughout the country who feel strongly about this issue. Pubs and restaurants are more commonly referred to when the hospitality industry is discussed in the media or in parliament, but there are so many more elements that make up this wonderful industry. Hotels, cafés, bars and B&Bs are often overlooked in the narrative. We share a seat at our tables, we deserve a seat at the top table.
A petition calling for a Minister for Hospitality needs 100,000 signatures to be debated in parliament. We reached that target on Saturday 12th December ... and the number of people signing is still increasing.
WHY WE NEED A MINISTER FOR HOSPITALITY
A dedicated minister would:
Be the champion and guardian of hospitality in parliament, promoting the importance of the economic, social and employment contribution of our industry to society.
Be fully invested and have deep understanding of this complex industry
Drive cohesive thinking and strategy at the top table inclusive of all sub sectors
Advance the status of Hospitality and Tourism in parliament.
We have 100,000 signatures. But we still want to hear your voice.
How can you help?
1. Follow our social media accounts! By liking, sharing and commenting on our posts you can help share our message to all corners of the UK.
2. Contact your staff and suppliers to encourage them to sign the petition, follow Seat At The Table’s social media accounts and spread the message to their friends, family, and contacts.
3. Contact your client database to ask them to support your business by signing the petition and following Seat At The Table’s social media accounts.
4. Contact us via our social channels if you would like to voice your support by showcasing your venue through Seat at the Table.
Click the links below to use your voice to help us get a #seatatthetable
I’ve long held the view that the hospitality sector requires really focussed representation in government. We have the opportunity now, if we raise enough signatures, for a debate to happen in parliament to create a minister for hospitality. Our new campaign “Seat at the Table” is something that addresses this and if we can get the required number of signatures behind this campaign then a debate will happen. It’s about our future, it’s about the future of our industry. Please get behind us.
Hospitality is the 3rd biggest employer in the UK representing over 3 million people. We the hospitality industry need someone in the seat of government to speak for us: from the local coffee shop to your local pub, the many hotels, the huge number of restaurants and all of the events. We need someone who understands our business understands how we work, so please I urge you sign the petition to get us a minister for hospitality.
THE HAND AND FLOWERS
A Minister for Hospitality would be a vital step forward for our industry by ensuring we have one single respected voice at the highest possible level in government. We have seen during this pandemic that proper well informed representation would be invaluable
Follow our progress on Instagram
PRESS RELEASE - THE PIG
Dedicated Social Media Campaign pushing for a Minister for Hospitality
Hospitality is the third largest employer in the UK yet there is no Minister for Hospitality in government. Over 3 million are employed by the sector and a further 2m dependant on it, there is £130bn in activity resulting in £38bn in taxation. This sector needs a seat at the highest table of government, as so many enjoy a seat at the tables of hundreds of restaurants, pubs, cafes and bars throughout the UK.
Campaign trailblazer and founder of The Pig Hotels, Robin Hutson, says, "If 2020 has shown us anything it's how little government understands the complexities and the power of the hospitality sector and importantly, how vital the hospitality sector is not only to the economy but also for employment and to the nation's happiness and overall mental health. This industry must have a powerful voice within government and we intend to dedicate the next 30 days to a social media campaign of some magnitude. Currently there are 42,000 signatures on the petition yet we must get to 100,000 for this to even be debated in parliament, let alone have someone sitting at the top table."
Hundreds of Britain's finest are actively behind and involved in this campaign including Angela Hartnett, Tom Kerridge, Rick Stein, and Jamie Oliver. Of the sector, chef and TV personality Tom Kerridge has said, "hundreds of young people are employed by the hospitality sector and are carving out exciting and fulfilling careers for themselves. If pubs and restaurants aren't given more of a voice then the future of them as entities are in jeopardy which will naturally lead to job losses."
There is talk of a January reshuffle in government and we see no reason why a Minister for Hospitality needn't take a much-needed seat at the table.