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Gov appoints first chief to clamp down on worker exploitation
Posted by Billy Wood on 05 Jan 2017
Sir David Metcalf has been named as the government’s first Director of Labour Market Enforcement who will be charged with leading efforts to crack down on worker exploitation.
A founding member of the Low Pay Commission and former Chairman of the Migration Advisory Committee, Metcalf will be spearheading a new strategy to bring together the work of the three government bodies tasked with tackling worker exploitation.
Setting strategic priorities for the Gangmasters and Labour Abuse Authority, Employment Agency Standards Inspectorate and HMRC’s National Minimum Wage enforcement team, efforts will help to centralise intelligence from the three agencies for the first time.
The new position has been created on the back of a string of scandals involving some of the UK’s most recognisable employers, including Sports Direct, who have been failing to pay their staff minimum wage, and ongoing concerns about worker’s rights in the so-called ‘gig economy’.
Following his appointment, Metcalf said: "I’m very excited to be taking on this new role, drawing together the important work of these 3 labour market enforcement teams.
"While the UK is by and large a fair and safe place to work, there are still rogue employers who exploit their workers and undercut honest businesses. As the government has made clear, this will not go unpunished."
Business Minister Margot James commented: "As we have made clear, the government is determined to make sure the economy works for all.
"That’s why we are investing £1.7 million in a national minimum and living wage awareness raising campaign alongside a record £25.3 million on national minimum and living wage enforcement next year to make sure the UK’s lowest paid workers get the pay rise they deserve."