The Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for Modern Slavery and Organised Crime (Karen Bradley):
On 10 September 2013, the Minister of State for Agriculture and Food made a written statement to Parliament announcing the Triennial Review of the Gangmasters Licensing Authority (GLA). I am pleased to announce the conclusion of the review. Responsibility for the GLA has now moved from the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs to the Home Office under a machinery of government change.
The GLA is an organisation which regulates the supply of labour to the farming, food processing and shellfish gathering sectors and protects workers in those sectors from exploitation. The GLA works to embed a framework through which workers are treated fairly and labour providers and labour users operate on a level playing field. The GLA also plays a significant role in enforcing the protection of workers and directly tackling those who choose to abuse the system.
The review has concluded that there is a continuing role for the GLA.
The review concludes that the functions performed by the GLA are still necessary, that the GLA remains the right body for delivering them and that it should be retained as an NDPB. The review also looked at the governance arrangements for the body in line with Cabinet Office principles of good practice. It further suggested that the GLA should develop mechanisms for continued effective communication and engagement with stakeholders. The report makes some recommendations in this respect; these will be implemented shortly.
By moving sponsorship of the GLA to the Home Office, the government is seeking to strengthen the GLA’s law enforcement functions, supporting the Home Office’s work to tackle modern slavery and worker exploitation.
The full report of the review of the GLA can be found on the GOV.UK website and a copy will been placed in the Library of the House.