Unprepared gangmaster refused licence
29th January 2009
An application for a GLA licence has been refused as the gangmaster was desperately underprepared and had given no thought as to how to run the business.
Mrs Paramjit Kaur who applied a GLA licence for Birmingham based Stardust Contracts Limited, has been told that the application has been refused and that trading without a licence is a prosecutable offence with penalties of up to ten years imprisonment and a fine.
We expect an application for a licence to show systems in place that demonstrate the ability to meet each and every section of the GLA licensing standards. With no paperwork prepared for the inspection and no previous experience in the GLA sector the application failed five of the nine sections of our licensing standards.
Other concerns relate to her declared title of co-director when no other individual was named on the licence application.
In the past the GLA have refused a number of licence applications from individuals believed to be applying on behalf of others who are trying to hide their involvement in the business.
Paul Whitehouse, Chairman of the GLA said:
“This lady has wasted her money in applying for a GLA licence when she has put no effort into setting up the business.”
“A gangmaster is responsible for the welfare of workers and we need to see that this responsibility is taken seriously.”
Notes to editors
1. The Gangmasters Licensing Authority (GLA) was set up to curb the exploitation of workers in the agricultural, horticultural, shellfish gathering and associated processing and packing industries.
2. The majority of workers involved in these industries come from countries such as: Romania, Poland, Slovakia, Hungary, Bulgaria, Lithuania, Latvia, Pakistan and Portugal.
3. So far, 1,210 labour providers hold a GLA licence. Eighty five licenses have been revoked (eight with immediate effect).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 report anonymously at www.gla.gov.uk/report
Public enquiries: 0845 602 5020
Media enquiries: 0115 900 8962