As new laws make employers liable for employing illegal workers, the Home Office offers some guidance
The Home Office has launched a new toolkit to help restaurateurs who hire migrant workers to stay on the right side of the law. This follows the introduction of new immigration laws which mean anyone who knowingly hires illegal workers could now face unlimited fines and prosecution that could lead to a two year jail sentence and being named and shamed.
This shift in responsibility onto the employer spells danger for the hospitality industry, which makes extensive use of workers from other countries, in part to try to compensate for the UK skills shortage.
The new Home Office website, employingmigrantworkers.org.uk, is designed to provide support and advice to companies, as well as to stop individuals being exploited. The site contains a stepby- step guide as well as a set of good practice case studies.
Holly Lowes-Bond, Human Resources Manager at Conran (now D&D London, see below), said the company has already taken steps to ensure it can get the staff it needs within the legal framework. "We require a highly skilled team of professionals. The hospitality industry faces severe shortfalls in the skills available within the labour market and we welcome all applicants who will work alongside us in reaching our goals."
With the help of both the Home Office and the Police, Conran has developed "an equal opportunities ethos supported by an investment to train both the operational and Human Resources teams in maintaining the standards required."