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Annie Hayes

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Discrimination claims may soar

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Employers are under the spotlight this summer as recruiters take on migrant workers and fail to implement proper checks.

According to DAS an insurer, bosses may face race discrimination claims if they do not apply the proper procedures when verifying candidates’ eligibility to work.

Under Section 8 of the Asylum and Immigration Act 1996, it is a criminal offence to employ an individual who is not entitled to work or live in the UK. In order to avoid liability under the Act, prospective employees are asked to provide documents showing that they are entitled to live or work in the UK.

Rhian Gait Rosser of DAS advises that the following documents are suitable:

• UK passport or National Identity card
• Work permit with a passport or travel document
• Letter from the Home Office

Fines of upto £5,000 can be levied on employers who are found to be in breach of the Act. However, employers may face the dock if they are inconsistent with their approach. Cherry picking by appearance and making random checks may lay claim to discriminatory behaviour.

In a further warning, Rhian Gait Rosser comments: “Nobody likes to be told who they may or may not employ, but following the guidelines ensures there is no comeback later. The trouble is, unsuccessful applicants may suspect racial bias.”

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Annie Hayes

Editor

Read more from Annie Hayes
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