Immigration checks on Lambeth traffic wardens results in 48 resignations

An employer’s immigration check on traffic wardens in a London borough has resulted in nearly 50 of them quitting, it has emerged.

Car park company NCP conducted background checks on all 150 wardens working at Lambeth Council when it took over their contracts from Apcoa Parking in August. Forty-eight of them either resigned or just didn’t turn up for work, according to the company’s spokesman Tim Cowan.

He told the BBC: “We can’t say for definite they didn’t have the right to work in this country but we did see some passports and documents we were concerned about.”

The news comes as the UK Borders Agency is continuing to bring in changes to the immigration system, placing much of the onus on employers to conduct background checks for migrant workers. Businesses who wish to employ skilled foreign workers under Tier 2 of the new system, which goes live in November, are being urged by the Home Office to apply for a licence by October.

Employers can be fined up to £10,000 for each illegal worker they employ under rules introduced in February.

Earlier this week, campaigners complained that the new Australian-style, points-based system for immigration was still “tremendously complicated”, and questioned whether placing much of the burden on employers to check and monitor migrant workers would lead to social justice.

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