GLA publishes gangmaster inspection reports on web – new help for labour users
16th September 2008
Labour users concerned to know more about the gangmasters who provide them with workers are now being given an extra helping hand by the Gangmasters Licensing Authority (GLA). Now, anybody who uses a licensed labour provider (gangmaster) can check if they have been inspected by the GLA on the authority’s website. The list of inspections will be updated on a weekly basis but will only include inspections where the final report has been officially completed.
The reports reveal:
• If the GLA is revoking the gangmaster’s licence
• any additional conditions which may have been added to the licence
• whether an application for a licence has been refused
• if no issues were raised at the inspection
The GLA encourages any labour user who may have further questions to contact their labour provider direct. The names of 67 labour provider businesses which have been inspected and have been notified of the results of the inspections have been published on the GLA website.
The website also provides a published list of every company that has had its licence revoked by the GLA. All those labour providers who have been inspected are sent their own GLA decision letter.
Paul Whitehouse, Chairman of the GLA, said:
“This is an opportunity for labour users to find out the results of inspections of the labour providers they use and make an informed choice as to whether they are happy with their service.
“Knowledge is power. The cataloguing of gangmaster inspections in the public domain is an extra piece of information which is available for the responsible labour user with the ultimate aim of protecting workers. As a result of inspections, so far 70 gangmasters’ licences have been revoked by the GLA since it became operational in 2006, of these revocations seven were with immediate effect."
Philip Hudson, Chief Horticultural Adviser of the National Farmers Union, said:
“The new inspection reports provided by the GLA give labour users an excellent opportunity to check up on their labour provider. I would urge all to take advantage.”
Notes to editors
1. The Gangmasters Licensing Authority was set up to curb the exploitation of workers in the agriculture, horticulture, shellfish gathering and associated processing and packaging industries. It was set up following the death of 23 Chinese cockle pickers in Morecambe Bay in 2004.
2. The majority of workers involved in these industries come from countries such as: Romania, Poland, Slovakia, Hungary, Bulgaria, Lithuania, Latvia, India Pakistan and Portugal.
3. So far, the GLA has licensed approximately 1,200 labour providers. Seventy licences have been revoked (7 with immediate effect). One person has been prosecuted for operating without a licence, with more prosecutions forthcoming.
4. The GLA stepped up its fight against those who abuse workers with the launch of Operation Ajax in June. The operation was set up to increase the GLA’s activities with an 18-month programme of unannounced raids.
5. Paul Whitehouse, GLA Chairman, is available for interview by contacting 0115 900 8962.
6. Anybody who is aware of exploitation should contact the GLA on 0845 602 5020 or at www.gla.gov.uk/report.
Media enquiries: 0115 900 8962 / 07825 797130