The Gangmasters Licencing Authority needs to be disbanded or it's remit greatly reduced to decrease the impact on small business. It could mean that small businesses I use can't tender for contracts (and potential lose money and go out of business) and larger firms are at an advantage being able to absorb the cost of a licence up front. The licence duplicates much of the regulation under health and safety and employment law.

Why is this idea important?

The GLA has recently started to clamp down on people without a Gangmasters Licence when many of the organisations involved didn't realise they needed this expense licence. I contract out work to small businesses, some of the work is manual labour and falls under the GLA remit. However, the employees of the contractors are full-time and permanent members of staff, they have protection under Health and Safety law. There is no need for this extra level of red tape in many of the industries covered, which is a formality except the extortionate fee toget a licence.

This body was created as a knee jerk reaction to the cockle-pickers disaster in Morecambe Bay. It may have a place in regulating some businesses, but the law was badly written and is being implemented by the GLA in ways not in keeping with the spirit of the lawmakers of the time. I feel the GLA is doing this to try and justify it's existence in a time of cuts, by raising income and issuing more licences to look busy.

Therefore the GLA should be reined in to cover more specific areas, replace with something new or abolished.

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