More must be done to improve the numbers of Muslim graduates moving into jobs, minister for employment Margaret Hodge said yesterday.
New figures show just 76% of Muslim graduates of working age are in jobs, compared with the overall graduate rate of 87%.
Hodge, who chairs the cross-government Ethnic Minority Employment Task Force, told a seminar yesterday that the economy as a whole is missing out on a diverse workforce.
“This seminar is being held at a very important time when we are all thinking about how young Muslims can be encouraged to feel integrated into British society. The 11% gap in getting Muslim graduates into jobs is really worrying.
“It is completely unacceptable that highly skilled people from Muslim backgrounds are coming up against such barriers,” she said.
About 2% of UK graduates are Muslims – around 150,000 people.
“We need a concerted effort working in partnership with educators, trainers and employers to tackle this disadvantage and close the gap in opportunity,” Hodge added.
The seminar Muslim Graduates in the Labour Market was organised by charity QED in partnership with the task force.