Recruitment agency loses appeal against losing GLAA licence

A Boston-based recruitment agency, which had its Gangmasters and Labour Abuse Authority (GLAA) licence revoked, has lost its appeal against the decision.

A statement released by the GLAA this morning, reveals the agency, Go Solutions of Main Ridge, Boston, had its licence revoked in December 2017 following compliance inspections by the GLAA earlier that year.

The GLAA says its inspectors discovered a “multitude of failings”, including 12 breaches of the GLAA’s licensing standards, five of which the GLAA says were serious enough on their own to cause the business to fail the inspection.

In its investigation the GLAA found:

  • That Go Solutions’ principal authority Gavin Overton was not fit and proper, with officers concluding that he had no knowledge of the business he was supposed to be running and could not even access office computer and payroll systems.
  • That Ricky Gutteson and Ian Tebbs were considered to be in charge of the business and that both individuals had previously had licences refused or been named on licences which were refused. Gutteson had been found to be not fit and proper, and Tebbs had previously worked for two licence holders revoked by the GLAA. The duo was once again found to be not fit and proper following the inspection of Go Solutions.
  • That Overton’s competency came into question due to his failure to explain the difference between the National Minimum Wage and National Living Wage, and not knowing where worker files were kept.
  • That finances in general were an area of great concern to the GLAA, with inspectors finding the company had not been making accurate VAT returns and had also been employing people as self-employed even though HMRC had informed them twice that they could not be considered as that.
  • That payslips seen by the GLAA indicated that some workers at the business were not paid the NMW and timesheets failed to show breaks taken by workers.
  • That no records were kept about holiday pay as well as sick, maternity, paternity and adoption pay, which all workers are legally entitled to.
  • That basic health & safety issues were uncovered and the business did not know that workers must not be prevented from or penalised for joining a trade union.
  • That despite appealing the revocation of its licence, no one from Go Solutions attended the employment tribunal held in Nottingham in December 2018.

Employment Judge Elizabeth Heap, in delivering her written conclusion earlier this month, said: “The appellant’s workers might properly be classed as vulnerable workers given that the majority are Eastern European with little or no grasp of the English language.

“The lack of affording to them of basic rights as workers, such as the right to be paid at the rate of the NMW (which the appellant has failed to demonstrate in a number of cases by, amongst other things, a deficiency in records) and to ensure that they are paid the holiday pay to which they are entitled, is demonstrative of an exploitation of those workers.”

Recruiter contacted Go Solutions for comment but had not heard back by deadline. 

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