Forced Labour

Department for Communities and Local Government written question – answered on 28th January 2015.

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Photo of Paul Blomfield Paul Blomfield Labour, Sheffield Central

To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government, what guidance his Department issues to local authorities on proactive inspection of houses of multiple occupation for cases of labour exploitation.

Photo of Brandon Lewis Brandon Lewis Minister of State (Communities and Local Government)

My Department is responsible for housing and planning law.

In 2012, my Department published guidance to local authorities on dealing with rogue landlords, including “beds and sheds”. It noted how (the rare cases of) landlord criminality may be linked to other issues, such as providing illegal employment, benefit fraud, or tax evasion. In some parts of the country, outbuildings are occupied by predominantly migrant workers, some of whom may be in the UK illegally. We recommended that local authorities combine forces with other agencies – and may wish to form focussed multi-disciplinary teams.

We intend to publish an updated edition of the guidance in due course.

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