Sir David Metcalf named as Director of Labour Market Enforcement

A government crackdown on exploitation in the workplace will be headed up by Sir David Metcalf.

As the newly-appointed Director of Labour Market Enforcement, he will set the strategic priorities for the Gangmasters and Labour Abuse Authority, Employment Agency Standards Inspectorate and HMRC’s National Minimum Wage enforcement team.

“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,” said Sir David Metcalf.

The agencies are centralising their intelligence for the first time, with the aim of enabling Metcalf to draw up an annual strategy targeting sectors and regions, which are vulnerable to unscrupulous employment practices.

Metcalf, who was chairman of the Migration Advisory Committee until August, is also working alongside the Independent Anti-Slavery Commissioner to tackle exploitation and slavery in the labour market.

The appointment comes ahead of the launch of a £1.7 million national minimum and living wage awareness raising campaign later this month. This campaign aims to help make sure the UK’s lowest paid workers receive the correct rates of pay when they increase on 1 April and to know what steps to take if they do not. Since 2013, almost 700 employers who have failed to pay the national minimum or living wage have been named and shamed, according to government figures.

The announcement also comes weeks after powers came into force which mean rogue employers now face up to two years in prison for serious or repeat labour market offences.

Metcalf is currently an emeritus professor at the London School of Economics. He has worked extensively on the economic impact of unions and on pay systems and structures. He was chairman of the Migration Advisory Committee from 2007 to August 2016.

He is a past member of the Senior Salaries Review Body, providing recommendations on pay for Judges, Senior Civil Services, top military and senior NHS Managers and a founding member of the Low Pay Commission.

As the Director of Labour Market Enforcement he will report to Secretaries of State for the Home Office and the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy.







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