New help for vulnerable workers 'in dark corners'

05-08-2008

New help for vulnerable workers 'in dark corners'
New help for vulnerable workers 'in dark corners'

Employers who abuse vulnerable workers are being targeted by a new government initiative.

The new Fair Employment Enforcement Board (FEEB) will oversee enforcement bodies covering minimum wage, health and safety, employment agencies and gangmasters and a single helpline will be introduced for employees to report abuse.

Employment relations minister Pat McFadden, who will chair FEEB, said: "Compared to a decade ago there are three million more people in work in Britain and they all enjoy more employment rights than they would have in the past. Important minimum standards on wages, paid leave, maternity leave and conditions have been put in place.

"However, there are still dark corners of the labour market where rogue employers seek to mistreat their workers and more needs to be done to safeguard people's rights."

He said the scheme would target unscrupulous employers who undercut honest competition and prey on people who are fearful or so desperate to earn a living that they are open to exploitation.

"It is vital we boost awareness of employment rights and ensure those rights are properly enforced," he said.

"There should be no hiding place for employers who exploit vulnerable workers and who are not prepared to obey the law."

The measures are outlined in the final report of the Vulnerable Workers Enforcement Forum.


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