Construction minister Nigel Griffiths has asked industry leaders to gather evidence of unfair treatment of foreign workers ahead of a meeting in the autumn
Griffiths held a meeting last Wednesday with employers and union leaders to discuss concerns about the treatment of migrant workers from the 10 states that joined the European Union on 1 May. Gerry Sutcliffe, the DTI employment minister, attended the meeting.

Jerry Lean, industrial relations director of the Construction Confederation, said Griffiths and Sutcliffe were keen to learn about the problems the industry faced.

He said: "The government is now aware of the industry's concerns and wants us produce hard evidence and examples of how and where the exploitation of foreign workers is taking place."

Both employers and the unions object to the government's interpretation of the European Posted Workers Directive's rules on workers' pay, which is that temporary foreign workers must receive at least the minimum wage.

Ministers want examples of how exploitation is taking place

Jerry Lean, Construction Confederation

It is understood that the union representatives at the meeting urged the government make it compulsory for firms to ensure all employees were treated in accordance with the industry's collective agreements.

  • The Construction Industry Joint Council, which is made up of representatives from the Construction Confederation and unions, is finalising fresh dispute resolution guidelines for the industry in response to the 2002 Employment Act.