FLEX publishes a new working paper on the experiences of cleaners in the UK. “If I Could Change Anything About My Work...” Participatory Research With Cleaners In The UK is the first in a series of working papers on the experiences and drivers of labour abuse and exploitation in three understudied low-paid sectors of the economy: cleaning, hospitality and the app-based courier sector. It highlights key workplace issues in the cleaning sector and the risk and resilience factors that impact cleaners’ vulnerability to – and ability to push back against – violations of their employment rights.
This International Migrants Day, FLEX is highlighting issues faced by workers in the app-based courier sector. App-based couriers – a high proportion of whom are migrants – have been at the frontline of the coronavirus pandemic, delivering food and parcels to allow others to keep safe and the economy to keep going. Yet, because they are classed as self-employed, app-based couriers are themselves left unprotected against the economic and health risks they are protecting the rest of us from.
If I could change anything about my job, it would be the contribution to social security, to have the right to sick pay that covers the basic expenses at least.
Carla, Colombian cleaner*
Together with the Scottish Government and JustRight Scotland, Fife Migrants Forum (FMF) and Focus on Labour Exploitation (FLEX) have published new guidance for seasonal migrants workers coming to Scotland to work in the so
The Coronavirus pandemic and its related economic impact have significantly affected workers. FLEX’s recent briefing has shown that those in low-paid jobs were being laid off, denied entitlements and threatened with dismissal, while some of those still in work described feeling pressured to work excessively long hours and under unsafe conditions. During the last months, unions, NGOs and labour inspectors have uncovered cases of labour abuse and exploitation in a number of sectors, including agriculture, garment, cleaning, gig economy and domestic work.
As the lockdown eases and more people start going back to work, it is vital that workers have access to information about their rights and know where to seek help if they experience problems at work.
To commemorate International Domestic Workers’ Day, Dolores Modern from the Latin American Women’s Rights Service (LAWRS), writes for FLEX about the experiences of Latin American migrant domestic workers in the UK, the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on these workers and what needs to change so they are better protected from labour abuse and exploitation.
In March 2020, FLEX and Fife Migrants’ Forum started a new piece of work together to understand and document the experiences of migrant agricultural workers in Angus, Fife, Kincardineshire and Perthshire. This work builds on FLEX’s previous work to understand the possible risks of the UK Government’s ‘seasonal workers pilot’ in agriculture.
What's happening to farm labour in the light of Brexit and COVID-19? And what might this mean for exploitation? This blog builds on FLEX previous work on the 'seasonal workers pilot' by exploring these questions and calling on government to ensure meaningful scrutiny of labour conditions in UK agriculture.
Today FLEX and the Labour Exploitation Advisory Group (LEAG)* publish the report ‘Opportunity Knocks: improving responses to labour exploitation with secure reporting’, along with a complementary executive summary.
FLEX publishes a new briefing examining the impact of the pandemic on labour exploitation. It finds it will raise the risk of exploitation for specific categories of workers who were already made more vulnerable to abuse by migration and social protection policies. FLEX provides clear recommendations to protect these workers and ensure modern slavery offences do not rise as a result of the virus.
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