John Cryer MP calls for an end to the exploitation of staff in UK Hotels

Representatives from a range of civil society organisations, trade unions and the hospitality sector attended a Parliamentary Reception on “Preventing the Exploitation of Staff in the UK Hotel Industry”.

The reception was hosted by John Cryer MP and featured speakers from the Staff Wanted Initiative, Unite the Union (Hotel Workers) and hotel trade body the International Tourism Partnership. Addressing the meeting, John Cryer stated:

“Too many people who work in hotels face exploitation; working long hours over their contracted hours, paid minimum wage or even less, and often being forced to sign contracts to make themselves falsely self-employed. This type of behaviour is totally deplorable and unacceptable.”

Joanna Ewart-James of Anti-Slavery International and the Staff Wanted Initiative noted:

Whilst many customers are not aware of the exploitation faced by some hotel staff working behind the scenes, sometimes the hotels themselves are deliberately turning a blind eye. The Staff Wanted Initiative calls on hotels to put in place concrete measures, set out in our ‘SEE formula’, to ensure workers are not vulnerable to exploitation and even worse, trafficking and forced labour.”

A lively discussion followed focused on how hotels could be encouraged to adopt better practice with regard to their agency staff and how gaps in the existing regulatory framework which fails to identify and prevent such abuse can be addressed.

Media reports from the meeting

Calls for hotels to engage in dialogue to prevent the exploitation of agency staff

Hotel groups deny exploitation of housekeeping agency staff

Hotels urged to take heed of staff exploitation claims