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Enforcing holiday pay among recommendations to tackle exploitation

on Friday, 18 May 2018.

Enforcing holiday pay among recommendations to tackle exploitation

Tough new measures have been proposed in the Labour Market Enforcement Strategy 2018 to 2019 report to tackle exploitation of the low-paid.

A total of 37 recommendations have been put forward to help the lowest paid workers, with suggestions including the enforcement of holiday pay, payslips for all workers, bigger financial penalties for employers who break the law and tougher enforcement of rights for agency workers.

Sir David Metcalf, who published independent strategy, explained that the recommendations are designed to protect vulnerable workers and ensure that good, compliant firms are not undercut by unscrupulous competitors.

“It’s important the government has the necessary powers to crack down on bad bosses who exploit and steal from their workers – that includes bigger penalties to put employers off breaking the law,” he said.

Other provisions set out in the report include calling on large organisations to take responsibility for their supply chains, with the threat of publicly naming the large business and its supplier for non-compliance. It has also proposed providing greater resources to the Employment Agency Standards Inspectorate, and licensing certain industries such as hand car washes and nail bars which have been identified as sectors at risk of labour exploitation.

The recommendations also aim to tackle the practice of ‘phoenixing’, which sees directors dissolving their companies to avoid paying workers tribunal awards and other enforcement penalties.

“We will not accept illegal behaviour from bosses who exploit their workers and cheat the competition, which is why we are already cracking down on irresponsible company directors and boosting protections for workers,” said Business Minister Andrew Griffiths.

“We will enforce holiday pay and give new rights for every worker to get a payslip and a list of their rights when they start a job as part of our modern Industrial Strategy plans to build a Britain fit for the future,” added Griffiths.

The report is launched as new HMRC stats show that its enforcement teams have doubled the number of underpaid workers they have recouped money for to 200,000 in 2017.