Police uncover low pay in clampdown

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First published in News by

POLICE have launched new efforts to tackle human exploitation in West Swindon by targeting businesses in the area.

Last week the neighbourhood policing team and detectives from the human exploitation team with Wiltshire Police carried out intelligence gathering operations around Rodbourne Cheney.

It was the first in a series of new bids to investigate human exploitation in the town, and focused primarily on car washes.

Some cases of low pay were discovered, and officers are now working with employees and businesses to work through some of the issues.

PC Steve Yeates, beat manager for Toothill and Freshbrook, was involved in the operation, alongside detectives and local PCSOs.

He said it is important to begin constructive talks with any potential victims and to tap into that community which can often be overlooked.

“We have had an operation with the human exploitation team run by detectives alongside local officers,” he said.

“Last week they worked with the West Swindon neighbourhood policing team, and that involved going to car washes and working with people employed there.

“There is an underlying motivation to some of these cases. One (person) we were talking to was from Bulgaria and had worked as a vet in his home country, earning just £1 an hour. That would be the wage for a vet but in this country he is cleaning cars for £4.50 an hour.

“Some businesses can exploit these people by taking their passports away from them when they get to this country, forcing them to work in the UK.

“We have gone in to these businesses to give them the opportunity to talk to us and get some support. We reflect all parts of the community and this is a very hard-to-reach group.”

PC Yeates said all aspects of exploitation need to be investigated thoroughly, including making inroads with the victims and understanding their situations.

“The majority of the issues encountered were payment issues rather than the more severe aspects of human exploitation, but we need to be able to look after these people as well,” he said.

“They are hard working people and they need our support to do that work and be paid properly.”

Det Sgt Rob Findlay, of the human exploitation team at Wiltshire Police, said: “We have been working with neighbourhood policing teams locally on intelligence gathering operations surrounding human exploitation.

“During the recent operation in West Swindon we found some issues of low pay and we are working with the employees and businesses as part of the ongoing series of operations. ”

Comments (14)

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6:24am Wed 16 Jul 14

messyits says...

Do our police think this is confined to Swindon--and surely it is an HMRC problem.
Do our police think this is confined to Swindon--and surely it is an HMRC problem. messyits
  • Score: -16

7:37am Wed 16 Jul 14

swindondad says...

I hope that checked the immigration status of all the staff at these locations.
I hope that checked the immigration status of all the staff at these locations. swindondad
  • Score: 17

8:24am Wed 16 Jul 14

barlizard says...

None of these car washes are going to pay the minimum wage, for example the one in corporation street, charges a fiver, and has 7 employees. So they need to wash 9 cars an hour just for the wages, then there's site rent, electric, jet wash, soaps & wax. So how many more do they need to wash? They can't possibly wash enough to be viable. Any one who pays £5 for a 30 second wash must be stupid!
None of these car washes are going to pay the minimum wage, for example the one in corporation street, charges a fiver, and has 7 employees. So they need to wash 9 cars an hour just for the wages, then there's site rent, electric, jet wash, soaps & wax. So how many more do they need to wash? They can't possibly wash enough to be viable. Any one who pays £5 for a 30 second wash must be stupid! barlizard
  • Score: 3

8:31am Wed 16 Jul 14

South Stand says...

barlizard wrote:
None of these car washes are going to pay the minimum wage, for example the one in corporation street, charges a fiver, and has 7 employees. So they need to wash 9 cars an hour just for the wages, then there's site rent, electric, jet wash, soaps & wax. So how many more do they need to wash? They can't possibly wash enough to be viable. Any one who pays £5 for a 30 second wash must be stupid!
A 30 second car wash? That's 120 cars per hour. Off you go now, back to school.
[quote][p][bold]barlizard[/bold] wrote: None of these car washes are going to pay the minimum wage, for example the one in corporation street, charges a fiver, and has 7 employees. So they need to wash 9 cars an hour just for the wages, then there's site rent, electric, jet wash, soaps & wax. So how many more do they need to wash? They can't possibly wash enough to be viable. Any one who pays £5 for a 30 second wash must be stupid![/p][/quote]A 30 second car wash? That's 120 cars per hour. Off you go now, back to school. South Stand
  • Score: 5

9:02am Wed 16 Jul 14

Davey Gravey says...

What is a dismal wage to native brits is good money to an immigrant.
Proof immigration isn't working and has to stop. Although I sympathise with people trying to better their lives it is to the detriment of British people. They should be deporting them by the hundreds daily.
What is a dismal wage to native brits is good money to an immigrant. Proof immigration isn't working and has to stop. Although I sympathise with people trying to better their lives it is to the detriment of British people. They should be deporting them by the hundreds daily. Davey Gravey
  • Score: 2

9:41am Wed 16 Jul 14

benzss says...

Davey Gravey wrote:
What is a dismal wage to native brits is good money to an immigrant.
Proof immigration isn't working and has to stop. Although I sympathise with people trying to better their lives it is to the detriment of British people. They should be deporting them by the hundreds daily.
How does that count as 'proof'? Jobs exist below the market clearing rate for most Britons, so immigrants do the work instead. How can that be a bad thing? Should those jobs simply not exist? Or perhaps the 'native' should lower their sights.
[quote][p][bold]Davey Gravey[/bold] wrote: What is a dismal wage to native brits is good money to an immigrant. Proof immigration isn't working and has to stop. Although I sympathise with people trying to better their lives it is to the detriment of British people. They should be deporting them by the hundreds daily.[/p][/quote]How does that count as 'proof'? Jobs exist below the market clearing rate for most Britons, so immigrants do the work instead. How can that be a bad thing? Should those jobs simply not exist? Or perhaps the 'native[s]' should lower their sights. benzss
  • Score: -4

10:22am Wed 16 Jul 14

motley crue says...

Davey Gravey wrote:
What is a dismal wage to native brits is good money to an immigrant.
Proof immigration isn't working and has to stop. Although I sympathise with people trying to better their lives it is to the detriment of British people. They should be deporting them by the hundreds daily.
Its about time they started rounding up up all the illegal immigrants and sending them all back and stopping immigration altogether a lot of them are just milking this country and taking the **** out of us there are far too many here already this country will regret it one day
[quote][p][bold]Davey Gravey[/bold] wrote: What is a dismal wage to native brits is good money to an immigrant. Proof immigration isn't working and has to stop. Although I sympathise with people trying to better their lives it is to the detriment of British people. They should be deporting them by the hundreds daily.[/p][/quote]Its about time they started rounding up up all the illegal immigrants and sending them all back and stopping immigration altogether a lot of them are just milking this country and taking the **** out of us there are far too many here already this country will regret it one day motley crue
  • Score: 25

10:38am Wed 16 Jul 14

faatmaan says...

and how many of these posts would be filled by long term unemployed, ?
a lot of these migrants legal or not, fill jobs the british would not do due to losing their cushy benefits driven standard of life, what I don't understand is why somebody unemployed can earn more untaxed than somebody toiling all hours.
and how many of these posts would be filled by long term unemployed, ? a lot of these migrants legal or not, fill jobs the british would not do due to losing their cushy benefits driven standard of life, what I don't understand is why somebody unemployed can earn more untaxed than somebody toiling all hours. faatmaan
  • Score: 1

11:21am Wed 16 Jul 14

Badgersgetabadname says...

“There is an underlying motivation to some of these cases. One (person) we were talking to was from Bulgaria and had worked as a vet in his home country, earning just £1 an hour. That would be the wage for a vet but in this country he is cleaning cars for £4.50 an hour".

But surely the cost of living is different as well?
Just seemed like an odd comparison.

More than 4 years unemployed with no reason as to why?
All benefits to be paid by vouchers and direct payments to landlords etc..
As a result of this petty crime will go up.

Migrants in the UK have added 35% more than they have taken (NOS) this is a higher percentage than native born residents.
Isnt the real issue that virtually nobody has seen an improvement in standard of living?
If someone is earning and working as per guidelines I do not see the problem, more taxes, more spending and adding value to the economy.
“There is an underlying motivation to some of these cases. One (person) we were talking to was from Bulgaria and had worked as a vet in his home country, earning just £1 an hour. That would be the wage for a vet but in this country he is cleaning cars for £4.50 an hour". But surely the cost of living is different as well? Just seemed like an odd comparison. More than 4 years unemployed with no reason as to why? All benefits to be paid by vouchers and direct payments to landlords etc.. As a result of this petty crime will go up. Migrants in the UK have added 35% more than they have taken (NOS) this is a higher percentage than native born residents. Isnt the real issue that virtually nobody has seen an improvement in standard of living? If someone is earning and working as per guidelines I do not see the problem, more taxes, more spending and adding value to the economy. Badgersgetabadname
  • Score: -13

1:14pm Wed 16 Jul 14

house on the hill says...

""Davey Gravey says...
What is a dismal wage to native brits is good money to an immigrant.
Proof immigration isn't working and has to stop. Although I sympathise with people trying to better their lives it is to the detriment of British people. They should be deporting them by the hundreds daily."""

""faatmaan says...
and how many of these posts would be filled by long term unemployed, ?
a lot of these migrants legal or not, fill jobs the british would not do due to losing their cushy benefits driven standard of life, what I don't understand is why somebody unemployed can earn more untaxed than somebody toiling all hours.""

Have to agree with the second comment. What it actually proves is that immigrants are prepared to work harder and longer for less to feed their families than the "expectation" culture workshy locals. Clearly they can survive on these lower wages, but too many still see drinking, smoking, mobiles, sat tv etc as essentials rather than luxuries to be earned.
But the one glaring thing is what sort of society is it when you get more for not working than you do from working, if you have a system like that, then you will have these stupid problems
""Davey Gravey says... What is a dismal wage to native brits is good money to an immigrant. Proof immigration isn't working and has to stop. Although I sympathise with people trying to better their lives it is to the detriment of British people. They should be deporting them by the hundreds daily.""" ""faatmaan says... and how many of these posts would be filled by long term unemployed, ? a lot of these migrants legal or not, fill jobs the british would not do due to losing their cushy benefits driven standard of life, what I don't understand is why somebody unemployed can earn more untaxed than somebody toiling all hours."" Have to agree with the second comment. What it actually proves is that immigrants are prepared to work harder and longer for less to feed their families than the "expectation" culture workshy locals. Clearly they can survive on these lower wages, but too many still see drinking, smoking, mobiles, sat tv etc as essentials rather than luxuries to be earned. But the one glaring thing is what sort of society is it when you get more for not working than you do from working, if you have a system like that, then you will have these stupid problems house on the hill
  • Score: 0

1:48pm Wed 16 Jul 14

Badgersgetabadname says...

house on the hill wrote:
""Davey Gravey says...
What is a dismal wage to native brits is good money to an immigrant.
Proof immigration isn't working and has to stop. Although I sympathise with people trying to better their lives it is to the detriment of British people. They should be deporting them by the hundreds daily."""

""faatmaan says...
and how many of these posts would be filled by long term unemployed, ?
a lot of these migrants legal or not, fill jobs the british would not do due to losing their cushy benefits driven standard of life, what I don't understand is why somebody unemployed can earn more untaxed than somebody toiling all hours.""

Have to agree with the second comment. What it actually proves is that immigrants are prepared to work harder and longer for less to feed their families than the "expectation" culture workshy locals. Clearly they can survive on these lower wages, but too many still see drinking, smoking, mobiles, sat tv etc as essentials rather than luxuries to be earned.
But the one glaring thing is what sort of society is it when you get more for not working than you do from working, if you have a system like that, then you will have these stupid problems
Agreed it says allot for work-shy locals.
I have lost count of the amount of times I have heard "I wouldnt work for less than".....
The bulk of payments from government are to pensions and child allowance the majority of those claiming will of paid into pension schemes over the years so no problem there which leaves child allowance.
If child allowance was only paid for first two children this would limit spend and people would be clear on what can be claimed for. Fix a cut off date and enforce it.
[quote][p][bold]house on the hill[/bold] wrote: ""Davey Gravey says... What is a dismal wage to native brits is good money to an immigrant. Proof immigration isn't working and has to stop. Although I sympathise with people trying to better their lives it is to the detriment of British people. They should be deporting them by the hundreds daily.""" ""faatmaan says... and how many of these posts would be filled by long term unemployed, ? a lot of these migrants legal or not, fill jobs the british would not do due to losing their cushy benefits driven standard of life, what I don't understand is why somebody unemployed can earn more untaxed than somebody toiling all hours."" Have to agree with the second comment. What it actually proves is that immigrants are prepared to work harder and longer for less to feed their families than the "expectation" culture workshy locals. Clearly they can survive on these lower wages, but too many still see drinking, smoking, mobiles, sat tv etc as essentials rather than luxuries to be earned. But the one glaring thing is what sort of society is it when you get more for not working than you do from working, if you have a system like that, then you will have these stupid problems[/p][/quote]Agreed it says allot for work-shy locals. I have lost count of the amount of times I have heard "I wouldnt work for less than"..... The bulk of payments from government are to pensions and child allowance the majority of those claiming will of paid into pension schemes over the years so no problem there which leaves child allowance. If child allowance was only paid for first two children this would limit spend and people would be clear on what can be claimed for. Fix a cut off date and enforce it. Badgersgetabadname
  • Score: -1

2:35pm Wed 16 Jul 14

swindondad says...

Thinking about it I would have thought that the staff at these "hand car wash" sites would be on some sort of piece work and therefore exempt from the minimum wage. As with many "cash only" businesses i would be surprised if 100% of turnover is declared for Tax.
Thinking about it I would have thought that the staff at these "hand car wash" sites would be on some sort of piece work and therefore exempt from the minimum wage. As with many "cash only" businesses i would be surprised if 100% of turnover is declared for Tax. swindondad
  • Score: 5

2:58pm Wed 16 Jul 14

MrAngry says...

swindondad wrote:
Thinking about it I would have thought that the staff at these "hand car wash" sites would be on some sort of piece work and therefore exempt from the minimum wage. As with many "cash only" businesses i would be surprised if 100% of turnover is declared for Tax.
It would be interesting to know if the big supermarkets who allow these companies to work on their premises are liable for vetting them.

In the construction industry, if a big company employs a builder who fails to pay his tax, the company becomes liable for the tax.

If the supermarkets were responsible for checking that anyone working on their premises had a valid work permit, this would solve half of the problem.
[quote][p][bold]swindondad[/bold] wrote: Thinking about it I would have thought that the staff at these "hand car wash" sites would be on some sort of piece work and therefore exempt from the minimum wage. As with many "cash only" businesses i would be surprised if 100% of turnover is declared for Tax.[/p][/quote]It would be interesting to know if the big supermarkets who allow these companies to work on their premises are liable for vetting them. In the construction industry, if a big company employs a builder who fails to pay his tax, the company becomes liable for the tax. If the supermarkets were responsible for checking that anyone working on their premises had a valid work permit, this would solve half of the problem. MrAngry
  • Score: 7

4:58pm Wed 16 Jul 14

house on the hill says...

swindondad wrote:
Thinking about it I would have thought that the staff at these "hand car wash" sites would be on some sort of piece work and therefore exempt from the minimum wage. As with many "cash only" businesses i would be surprised if 100% of turnover is declared for Tax.
Estimates of the "cash" economy are about £16billion so a lot of lost tax and NI there, But then who hasnt "had a job done for cash" or works for a bit of cash in hand at some stage so we are all guilty to a greater or lesser extent.
[quote][p][bold]swindondad[/bold] wrote: Thinking about it I would have thought that the staff at these "hand car wash" sites would be on some sort of piece work and therefore exempt from the minimum wage. As with many "cash only" businesses i would be surprised if 100% of turnover is declared for Tax.[/p][/quote]Estimates of the "cash" economy are about £16billion so a lot of lost tax and NI there, But then who hasnt "had a job done for cash" or works for a bit of cash in hand at some stage so we are all guilty to a greater or lesser extent. house on the hill
  • Score: 1

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