Cooper: Government not tackling exploitation of foreign workers

Immigration measures announced in the Queen’s speech don't tackle important issues on exploitation and illegal immigration , Yvette Cooper, Labour’s Shadow Home Secretary has said.

“We support many of the measures promised though of course we will scrutinise the detail, but it appears their impact will be limited,” Ms. Cooper said. “The Government is still not tackling the exploitation of foreign workers leading to the undercutting of local workers. There is nothing to improve enforcement of the national minimum wage, no action on agencies recruiting only from abroad, nothing to improve training for local workers for sectors recruiting heavily from abroad, no action to extend the Gangmasters licensing legislation, and nothing to deal with slum landlords using overcrowded housing to recoup labour costs.”

Ms. Cooper also blamed the government for “missing the opportunity to tackle illegal immigration which has got worse on their watch.”

“There's nothing to deal with the failure at the Home Office to deport bogus student cases, nothing to deal with loopholes in student visitor visas, and nothing to give UKBA officers who inspect colleges and workplaces the power of arrest,” Ms. Cooper said. “Immigration is important for Britain and needs to be controlled and managed so it is fair for all. That is why the impact on the labour market and the problem of illegal immigration need to be addressed.”

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