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Foreign workers

Community Veteran
Posts: 7,923
Thanks: 600
Fixes: 8
Registered: 02-08-2007

Foreign workers

I was staying in one of these  "cheapy hotels" recently and most of the staff were fron EU countries. I was amazed at the speed they worked, any faster and they would have been running. They always had a smile on their face and nothing was too much trouble. I suspect few residents of this country currently claiming benefits would be willing to change places with them !!
I am aware of course that most of these people are classed as self-employed and as such certain things do not apply to their conditions of service when compared with someone employed by a firm or organisation, for example I think I am correct in saying the minimum wage does not apply and they can be dismissed without or with minimal notice.
The question however is this............Am I guilty of exploiting these people ?  If the hotel had charged more to give them a better deal I probably would not have gone ?
3 REPLIES
Community Veteran
Posts: 16,848
Thanks: 1,133
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Registered: 06-11-2007

Re: Foreign workers

As a "paying guest" at the "hotel", you are part of the "business plan".... so.... NO, you are not exploiting them.... the owner of the "hotel" is.... If there is any problem with their working conditions, they are perfectly at liberty to change them.... the same way anyone else is..... If they understand English, and watch English TV. they will soon become aware of the "working practices, and regulations", and in so doing, would find a way of contacting "the authorities", to sort out any problems..... (assuming they are legal workers..)
as for....
Quote

They always had a smile on their face and nothing was too much trouble.

this is part of their culture, (and a pleasure to be on the receiving end of it)  in a similar way the American culture appears to be.... calling people "sir" and "ma`am"... and the proverbial smile....  Smiley
Unfortunately, we Brits, seem to have lost this culture quite a number of years ago, and therefore if you get "service with a smile" from a Brit, then it is something worth writing to the papers about,..... ! instead of the usual "surly" attitude you get nowadays.
Community Veteran
Posts: 18,547
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Registered: 12-08-2007

Re: Foreign workers

Any hotel owner would have to abide by the minimum wage rules and he would have to deduct tax and NI from wages.  They could not be employed on a freelance basis if they were permanent staff.
sidewinder
Grafter
Posts: 37
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Registered: 21-11-2009

Re: Foreign workers

Quote from: artmo
Any hotel owner would have to abide by the minimum wage rules and he would have to deduct tax and NI from wages.  They could not be employed on a freelance basis if they were permanent staff.

That's exactly right. Most foreign staff who deal with the public will be employed under the correct rules and be paying their way so don't feel guilty, they are usually better off here with regard to salary and working conditions. I guess you could always give them a nice big tip. It is a shame that the black market and the undesirable element give foreign workers a bad name. I have worked with numerous foreigners during the last 35 years and, if I had my own company, would not hesitate to employ foreign staff who are qualified to do the job. They tend to be less problematical than the home grown lazy variety.