Eastern European Workers

I watched "British Workers Wanted" last night on channel 4.  It was centered around a recruitment agency who mainly employed Eastern Europeans, they were paying around £7.25 an hour (national minimum wage?).  Basically all the workers were heading back home and they agency needed to find British workers instead to fill the gaps. The programme makers blamed Brexit in a roundabout way.  However, I was wondering about this, is it Brexit or were these people heading off home already?  I remember about 4 years hearing an interview with a number of fruit farmers who were saying that they were having problems recruiting people.  For whatever reason they just weren't coming over to work here and this was way before Brexit.  I can't believe that they are already leaving because decisions haven't been made yet about permits and visas although I suspect the uncertainty doesn't help!  Has anyone had similar issues ie people leaving or seasonal workers you relied on are getting harder to find or this just the media cooking up a Brexit storm again?

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  • I just had a weekend away in Somerset and Wiltshire where the hotel we were staying at in Bradford on Avon, Wiltshire, was largely staffed by Easten Europeans who went out their way to be friendly and helpful during our stay. The only English worker we met was a young receptionist. Like wise on the Sunday we were at Glastonbury's Piza Express where again the majority of the staff were Eastern Europeans. It is not just outdoors workers but also workers in the hospitality sector that employs huge number of overseas workers. It will be very interesting to see what will happen when we leave the EU in 2019.......
    • We have two directors and five staff at our place. All the staff are Polish, one is a foreman and another is a driver. 

    • The Government well have to sort out a permit system and give these people confidence that they are welcome to stay and work here.  I think there are plenty of good hard working young people in this country just not enough!  There are also loads of wasters but work ethic is certainly a problem!  Where does it stem from though? My Children work harder than I ever did at school yet I don't mind a bit of graft!! (if that makes sense).

      • PRO

        Only 3 million or so EU nationals living in the UK..

        Wonder how many extra staff they'll struggle to employ to sort that out.

        The government could commission a new computerised system that would save money....

    • PRO

      The catering and hospitality sector is dominated by foreign staff - its the same old situation -- jobs that are hard,have long hours and appear to have have 'poor' social standing - the general British public and young workers avoid like the plague. 

      The impact could be so huge on the hospitality industry that the government might have to grant certain industry based visas. 

      Similar with certain nursing/ care work - Id expect to see specific visas granted to allow easy access to care work for foreign workers - otherwise the healthcare system would crumble.

  • PRO

    My wife works in the NHS, in a very senior HR position in one of the largest of the big London hospitals. She attends a lot of meetings, comferences etc about recruitment and training.

    The NHS relies upon a significant number of foreign nurses joining, to keep the level of nurses at the required level. Bear in mind that there is churn, and the NHS is the UK's largest employer.

    The stunning figures are that approximately 3.8k nurses are enrolled per month in the uk(normally), to replace leavers and retirees etc...... with a high proportion of Spanish, Italian and Phillipino nurses. All very well trained. That intake figure has dropped to 4-600 per month! It's unsustainable.... and directly linked to Brexit.

    Farage's £350 million a week for the NHS seems to have disappeared as well!

    Anyway..... I guess I wanted to say, some areas of British life will not be affected by Brexit, some will be better(not sure what?) but some of it will definitely be worse... and the NHS wasn't one that most people would want to be affected by it... but it is!

    • Well said. The reality of Brexit is beginning to bite.....
    • Those figures were debunked on a radio programme , sorry, I can't remember which one but they had been totally misinterpreted. Brexit wouldn't affect phillino nurses anyway.

  • PRO
    A couple of years ago my wife and I attended a Christmas Party at the local David Lloyd club, which also turned out to be the Christmas party for Phillipino nurses working at the local hospital, I would describe them as a group of significant importance, their numbers presumably may increase after Brexit, depending on the value of the pound.

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