New labour market powers used in consecutive months in Shropshire
24th January 2019
Investigators from the Gangmasters and Labour Abuse Authority (GLAA) have used recently introduced labour market powers to prevent five people in Shropshire from supplying workers without a licence.
Labour Market Enforcement Undertakings (LMEUs) were served to a 32-year-old Bulgarian man and 31-year-old Bulgarian woman living in Telford who supplied workers to the food processing sector.
The Gangmasters (Licensing) Act requires people to have a licence to provide workers in agriculture, horticulture, shellfish gathering, food processing, and packaging to prevent labour exploitation and modern slavery.
An LMEU can be imposed when someone breaches the law. It features a signed agreement to comply with the GLAA and its rules.
The sanction was introduced in November 2016 as part of the Immigration Act.
The LMEUs have been signed by both individuals and will remain in place for one year.
These undertakings follow a further three LMEUs issued in December to three people in Shrewsbury after separate GLAA investigations.
A 25-year-old Bulgarian man and 30-year-old Bulgarian woman were served the undertaking for supplying and attempting to provide workers to recruitment agencies for work in food processing.
A 25-year-old Polish woman was also issued an LMEU for attempting to supply workers into the same sector.
These will all run for two years unless the GLAA is satisfied that there is full compliance and the LMEUs no longer need to be in place.
The GLAA currently has 11 active LMEUs and the UK’s first ever Labour Market Enforcement Order (LMEO), handed out to a couple in Leicester who made a small fortune by supplying illegal workers to food factories.
GLAA Director of Operations Ian Waterfield said: “LMEUs are a valuable tool in our fight against labour exploitation. I am pleased that our investigators are making good use of these powers and we will not hesitate to take legal action if we find out that these individuals have breached the agreements.
“As we have demonstrated, we aren’t afraid to use this new legislation in addition to our other powers to protect vulnerable workers and ensure that people are paid what they deserve.”
Do you know someone who you think is being exploited? If so, contact our intelligence team on 0800 432 0804 or email firstname.lastname@example.org