MEP to visit Wisbech as part of �3 million scheme to tackle exploitation of migrant workers
MEP Richard Howitt is due to visit Wisbech on Friday to kick start a �3million scheme to tackle the exploitation of migrant workers by gang-masters. He is planning to visit the Rosmini Community Centre and meet with migrants to hear their stories of explo
MEP Richard Howitt is due to visit Wisbech on Friday to kick start a �3million scheme to tackle the exploitation of migrant workers by gang-masters.
He is planning to visit the Rosmini Community Centre and meet with migrants to hear their stories of exploitation and see how European and Government money is making an impact.
Mr Howitt, the Cambridgeshire MEP, who represents the Labour Party, said: "The scourge of exploitation inflicted on migrant workers is akin to a modern form of slavery.
"It destroys not only the individuals involved but whole communities, leading to resentment and tension."
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The Government has identified hot-spots where the scheme will operate and a dedicated new team of officials from HM Revenue and Customs is being put in place.
The two-year project is set to start in London and Leicester before moving out to other areas including Wisbech.
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It will be financed from a �70million fund paid for by a levy on migrant workers.
The scheme's purpose is to tackle the dangerous working conditions and low pay of some migrant workers that can undercut local workforces and lead to community tensions.
Mr Howitt said: "Workers are not a commodity. With more money to enforce the law and inform people about it migrant workers will receive better pay and local workers will not be priced out of a job.
"The Rosmini Centre shows how European money can be used to bring communities together and equip them with the skills and knowledge they need to deal with community problems and get on with their lives.