I am moved to comment on Building's news story about Romanian workers to be given work permits for the UK (21 March, page 11) and the article on foreign staff working on a London site (17 April, page 36).
Where have we gone wrong that we cannot attract people into our industry without shipping them in from abroad?

The Construction Industry Training Board has been in charge of skills training for the past 25 years so must accept responsibility for the state we are in now. Building's news item mentioned that the CITB was thinking of issuing the Romanian workers with CSCS cards before they leave Romania. This only goes to show how worthless the CSCS has become. The idea that they can obtain safety cards while still in Romania is also dubious. It was stated that workers should have the equivalent of a level 3 NVQ. Does anybody know what the equivalent of a level 3 NVQ is in Romania?

The reality, as we all know but nobody wants to say, is that foreign labour is cheap labour. The industry does not want to pay the rate for the job to site operatives. Does anybody have the numbers of architects, structural engineers and QSs that have been shipped into the UK? Or would it be true to say that the professions have ways of protecting themselves?

How can we expect craftsmen to spend years learning a trade if they are to be replaced with cheaper labour brought in from abroad? People, especially young people, are just not that gullible anymore. This is yet another example of chronic short sightedness in a very myopic industry.