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Jobs go begging as hospitality industry calls out for workers

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The lack of backpackers and international students due to the COVID-19 pandemic has led to a worker shortage in the hospitality industry.

Chief executive of Catering Australia Wes Lambert says jobs are going begging as Melbourne opens up again.

“Pre COVID, 61 per cent of front of house employees in hospitality were casual, and over half of those were working holiday, and many more were international students,” he told Tom Elliott on 3AW Drive.

“So here we are in a situation, where there are no working holiday makers, there are very few international students, and at the same time the highly skilled employees that were on visas, that were not eligible for any of the government subsidies, were asked to leave Australia… and they’re unable to get back in.”

Mr Lambert said the lack of workers wasn’t because of the higher rates of JobSeeker and JobKeeper.

“JobSeeker was higher than it’s ever been, that is going to taper off, as is JobKeeper.

“Ultimately, as the Victorian economy opens up, we will be calling out to the unemployed to get into the hospitality industry.”

Click PLAY to hear the interview below