GLAA gives evidence to parliamentary inquiry into hand car washes
11th July 2018
The Gangmasters and Labour Abuse Authority (GLAA) has given evidence to MPs about its work to improve consumer confidence and protect vulnerable workers at hand car washes (HCWs).
Members of the Environmental Audit Committee met in Parliament on Tuesday 10 July to hear evidence from the GLAA, other regulators, and ministers about the impact of the growing number of HCWs operating in the UK.
The committee has held two sessions as part of its inquiry into the environmental and labour abuse dangers at some HCWs in the UK, questioning academics and other experts at its first meeting in June https://parliamentlive.tv/Event/Index/9b5e7389-5163-44a5-81e0-52eff37b2666
Since being granted new police-style powers by government to investigate exploitation across the labour market, the GLAA has commenced 305 investigations, 11% of which relate to the HCW sector.
In addition, the organisation has received 178 referrals from members of the public concerned about the operation of HCWs, with the most serious reports leading to enforcement activity and arrests.
Director of Strategy Darryl Dixon, who was the GLAA representative at the meeting, said: “HCWs are one of the most visible low-paid, low-skilled industries in the labour market. They are more visible in terms of their workers than other industries where we deal with exploitation such as construction, care homes, cleaning and catering.
“There’s understandably been a lot of media interest in the industry, especially recently with the app developed by the Clewer Initiative which lets drivers report potential modern slavery at HCWs. This is something we support on the basis that motorists use a bit of a common sense and don’t put themselves at risk of harm.
“We would also encourage you to get in touch with our intelligence team directly on 0800 432 0804 if you have specific concerns about modern slavery and labour abuse at a site.
“But enforcement is only one part of our approach. We are working with supermarket franchises in the East and West Midlands to develop a code of practice for HCWs which we anticipate will operate from September.
“We want to make sure consumers have the confidence to go to certain HCWs knowing that there is compliance with the National Minimum Wage and no modern slavery or health and safety risks for workers.”
Watch the meeting in full here https://parliamentlive.tv/Event/Index/3ded7bdf-4963-4f02-ac9a-c37a8dde3083