The Road Haulage Association urges the Government to do more to tackle the sector’s skills shortage.
The call comes as the All-Party Parliamentary Group for Road Freight and Logistics, chaired by the Rt Hon Sir Mike Penning MP, meets today (26 February) for the first time to address some of the big issues facing the industry including Brexit, air quality and the driver shortage.
Members from both houses will listen to evidence from key industry figures including the RHA which has been instrumental in setting up and resourcing the group.
A transport select committee inquiry in 2016 concluded that the driver shortage was hitting haulage hard but the RHA has been frustrated with the Government’s lack of progress as the problem has worsened.
RHA chief executive, Richard Burnett says that firms are finding it difficult to unlock Apprenticeship Levy funding as the sector has only drawn down a fraction of the £140m+ it’s contributed: “The Levy is supposed to help operators but our members tell us it’s a bureaucratic nightmare so we need to understand what the problems are and press the Government into action to resolve them.”
He also calls on the Government to support the RHA’s Road to Logistics initiative which aims to attract ex-offenders, former military personnel, the long-term unemployed and women amongst other diverse groups into the sector.