RICS launches campaign to get homeless into housebuilding

June 22, 2017 / Isla MacFarlane
RICS launches campaign to get homeless into housebuilding

RICS is calling on construction firms across the UK to help tackle the skills shortage in the industry by helping some of their community’s most vulnerable people get back into work.

It has been predicted that the UK construction industry will create around 190,000 new jobs by the end of 2018 but there is a growing fear that there will not be the talent to fill them.

RICS recent research revealed that the UK construction industry could lose almost 200,000 EU workers post-Brexit, should Britain lose access to the single market.

“We’re urging construction firms to provide routes into employment for young people who have experienced homelessness by offering more training-led programmes, adapting their working practices and getting involved with specialist ‘back-to work’ schemes for those facing barriers,” said Kim Bailey, PR & Communications Manager (North) (RICS).

Thousands of British construction workers are coming up for retirement age and RICS has long-warned the Government that the shortage of skilled workers — particularly quantity surveyors and bricklayers — is detrimentally affecting the house building industry, with an estimated 1.8 million new rental properties needed by 2025.

“It is important that employers tap into hidden talent pools, and instil or adapt various working practices to give vulnerable young people the best chances of gaining and staying in employment,” said Lynn Robinson, RICS Regional Director UK South and Wales. “These include offering work on permanent or temporary-to-permanent contracts; developing effective training programmes with a buddy or mentor; having appropriate HR policies and procedures in place – including weekly pay options — and working with specialist “back-to-work” schemes.

“We appreciate that a lack of a stable and settled homes makes it extremely difficult to find and maintain employment. With this in mind, we have launched an anti-homeless campaign known as ‘A Home for Cathy’ which aims to unite the wider property sectors and provide solutions to deliver more affordable homes.

“Despite the barriers they may face, most young people who have experienced homelessness or housing issues want to work and we believe that with the right support, many more can achieve just that.”

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