In its response to the second annual Labour Market Enforcement Strategy, published in July 2019, the government has finally set out the steps it intends to take in relation to three main areas of work.

For the most part, these focus on more joint working and information sharing to improve enforcement outcomes, as well as simplifying the enforcement landscape for businesses and for workers seeking to enforce their rights.

They also build on an existing government commitment to establish a single labour market enforcement body bringing together the three existing, enforcement agencies, which are:

  • The Employment Agency Standards Inspectorate (EAS);
  • Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs National Minimum and Living Wage enforcement team; and
  • The Gangmasters and Labour Abuse Authority.


In all, the strategy made 44 recommendations on labour market enforcement, the vast majority of which the government has accepted. In particular, it has agreed that the three bodies develop more strategies to improve awareness of employment rights in order to reach out to vulnerable workers, to raise awareness of the employment rights they enforce and to determine if there are additional routes to target underrepresented groups or groups where awareness is particularly low.

To that end, the government has agreed that EAS resourcing in 2019/20 be at least doubled from its current staffing levels in order to:

  • Effectively carry out its “business-as-usual” work;
  • Provide a dedicated analysis resource to maximise the benefits of its new case and intelligence management system; and
  • Properly undertake the additional enforcement work given the expansion of EAS’s remit to enforce umbrella companies.


Although the government launched a public consultation on the proposals for a new single labour market enforcement body in June 2019, it has not, as yet, committed to a specific date for publishing its response.

To read the report in full, click here.