Taskforce set to tackle beds in sheds scandal

Taskforce set to tackle beds in sheds scandal

17:06 PM, 30th April 2012, About 12 years ago 6

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Beds in sheds landlords face a crackdown by a special government taskforce aimed at closing down criminal landlords and tracking down illegal immigrants.

Housing minister Grant Shapps and immigration minister Damian Green have held the first in a series of cross-Whitehall summits with police, the UK Border Agency and local councils to set up the task force.

The meetings will devise an action plan to close down thousands of sheds and outbuildings rented illegally by migrants, including many with no right to be in the UK.

Ruthless landlords are exploiting these illegal immigrants for cash by charging them extortionate rents to live in cramped conditions, says the government.

Many make their homes in converted sheds and garages without planning permission in gardens.

These modern shanty towns are hidden away and are often only visible on websites such as Google Earth.

The sheds are often plagued with rats and cockroaches and are potential death traps with bad wiring and poor sanitation.

Housing Minister Grant Shapps said: “It is a scandal that these back garden slums exist to exploit people, many of whom are prepared to return voluntarily to their home country but instead find themselves trapped into paying extortionate rents to live in these cramped conditions.”

Some immigrants have told councils they want to go back home but can’t leave the country because landlords have destroyed their passports.

The ministers will discuss:

  • Ensuring councils have powers to close down the sheds
  • Gathering and sharing intelligence from across government agencies
  • Working with foreign governments to repatriate tenants in the sheds
  • Stopping more beds in sheds springing up

Immigration Minister Damian Green said: “Those with no right to be in the UK must leave the country. If they volunteer to leave, we will help. If they refuse, we will enforce their removal.This work is well under way – many individuals have already been removed from the UK and further enforcement visits will follow.”

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20:27 PM, 30th April 2012, About 12 years ago

Many restaurants accomodate illegal workers in windowless rooms such as celars and attics , over crowded and deadly . A clampdown is overdue.

21:59 PM, 30th April 2012, About 12 years ago

Slough is over-run by dirty, curry smelling shacks.

23:02 PM, 30th April 2012, About 12 years ago

This problem has been known about for years.
The illegal immigrants when found say they don't have a passport and so cannot be deported until it is ascertained where they can be deported to.
Suggestion anyone who hasn't got a passport put them in a army camp until they 'remember' where they they have come from.
Anyone in this country can take you to where illegal; migrants live and work.
I think you will find that a lot of these sheds are owned by the houseowner who rents their garage out.
Most of these 'Landlords' come from  certain ethnic groups.
It is not hard to locate where these sheds etc are.
The problems of illegal immigration are causing pressures on employment oportunities for British workers.
Also these migrants are causing presuure on available rental stock.
There is still widespread abuse of the student visa system.
If the police were involved then the rents from these illegal sheds would be deemed to be proceeds of crime and action would be taken against these criminal 'Landlords'.
Of course none of this will occur and the UK will continue to be flodded with illegal immigrants and EU legal migrants.
Ask anybody in the street what needs to be done and they will give straight forward and simple answers as to relevant resolutions to solve the problems.
But this nanny state is scared of being accused of being racist and xenophobic.
It is about time this country started looking after British subjects and not people from all over the world.
The country does not have enough resources for it's own subjects; let alone trying to house and pay benefits to half of Eastern Europe and illegal immigrants.

12:36 PM, 1st May 2012, About 12 years ago

 The point that is being missed in these comments is that the criminals housing these illegal workforces may well be British Citizens. They may have lured vulnerable people with expectations of work and a good income only to exploit them for cheap or (effectively) free labour by then taking their income as rent. The world is full of vulnerable people who take a risk to travel the world to try to improve the standard of living for their family or themselves. They are being exploited and until we clamp down on the exploiting gangs who run these rings and they lose the proceeds of their crime then the situation will continue. Yes, return people who are illegal immigrants to their homelands. But pause to consider how desperate a person must be to up sticks and put themselves in the hands of a gang in the first place. The government and the police need to deal with the source of the problem as well as removing those who have been exploited.

2:36 AM, 2nd May 2012, About 12 years ago

I have no sympathy for any person who, however desperate enters into illegal working in this country.
They are being exploited effectively with their permision.
They must surely be aware that if in the country illegally they have no rights and are most likely to be exploited.
Therefore so as to avoid being in the country illegally and being exploited  don't come here and have full rights where you come from.
Nobody will ever be able to deal with the problem whilst the UK hands out benefits to allcomers.
This is what attracts people to this country.
Benefits can give you an effective income of £26000.
Such an income in other countries these illegal immigrants come from is like being a millionaire.
Plus you get full access to the NHS, this would cost a fortune in their own countries.
Or benefit system is regarded by immigrants legal and not as the best free charity in the world.
You can't blame them when such a system is made available to them.
All they have to do is get here.
Once here they can, will and do milk the system for all it's worth.
Until the benefit system is radically reformed to prevent asylum seekers,illegal immigrants,EU migrantts being able to obtain benefits by dint of just managing to get here; nothing will change.
The taxpayer will continue to spend vast amounts of money on these types of people.
Not something that I really wish to pay for.
Can we look after the British citizens first and not concern ourself with all the hangers on, who seemingly get priority over British citizens.

10:12 AM, 2nd May 2012, About 12 years ago

 You assume that the people being exploited have not been lied to or have the education and/or information available to question the people who are traffiking in their desperation. I'm no bleeding heart. I know that people take advantage of a weak system. I would shudder to be so self-righteous as to blanket judge those who leave nothing in the hope of finding something better, however misguided they may be. And again, you seem to ignore the fact that British Citizens are amongst the criminals perpetuating this problem. Unless of course your definition of citizenship is somehow different to mine. I am not of the opinion that every person in this country is squeaky clean and averse to ripping off their own country.
Get the system right. Stringently prosecute the criminals taking advantage of a weak system. Return people safely to their homes. Aim for the bigger target.

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