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to think Baroness Scotland should have known her cleaner was illegal at £6 per hour

(49 Posts)
babybarrister Sun 27-Sep-09 10:26:27

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

3littlefrogs Sun 27-Sep-09 10:32:02

One law for them, another for the rest of us........................

GrendelsMum Sun 27-Sep-09 13:22:55

I can't imagine that Baroness Scotland spends a lot of time tracking the increase in wages for cleaners - sure, you have because you're currently looking for cleaners, but she may just not be asking round people about how much they pay. It wouldn't occur to me that someone was illegal because they were cheap - I'd actually be more likely to suspect they were simply not as good. She may well pay by the month as well, and not have worked it out by hour.

slowreadingprogress Sun 27-Sep-09 13:27:56

It takes about 5 minutes of research, if that, to find the going rate for cleaners (I'm outside london) is about £12 - £15 per hour. She, or anyone working for her to find a cleaner, would have known this. Agree with frogs. It's the one rule thing again. I think we have to all be a lot less naive about these people in these positions. They are there not only for the power but also the perks and there has clearly been a 'take what you can get' culture.

edam Sun 27-Sep-09 13:37:49

I found it interesting that the cleaner is married to a British citizen, living in Britain but not allowed to work. Seems very odd - I had no idea this situation could exist.

Anyway, Scotland clearly fucked up and probably did realise or should have known it was dodgy. Especially as she brought in the ruddy law in the first place. Her justification is a bit patronising as well - smacks of 'the rest of you are little people who have to obey the rules but it's not really important for me to comply'. Which is how a lot of politicians and senior people in business seem to think.

hambo Sun 27-Sep-09 13:38:52

Going rate here is 6.50....

cornsilk Sun 27-Sep-09 13:39:57

I doubt she would have a clue what cleaners are paid.

slowreadingprogress Sun 27-Sep-09 13:45:26

The thing is, for me, if you are the one bringing in laws which bind the country in certain ways then you need to make damn sure you DO have a clue when it comes to your own affairs. It's one of the responsibilities that come with the privelege of the position.

cornsilk Sun 27-Sep-09 13:47:03

Yes that's true.

MrsMellowdrummer Sun 27-Sep-09 13:53:31

Sounds to me as if it were a very silly oversight, which she rectified as soon as she was aware of it. She didn't make any financial gain from the situation.

All of us are human, and can occasionally make errors. She has paid the appropriate penalty.

If she is otherwise doing a good job, I don't see the need for her to resign.

ilovemydogandmrobama Sun 27-Sep-09 13:55:12

known or should have known wink

vbusymum1 Sun 27-Sep-09 14:01:28

One question that I don't understand about this and I haven't seen answered anywhere is how, if she saw the passport/documents, did she not know that the cleaner was illegal ? Are we to believe that they were clever enough forgeries to fool a highly educated woman ? I wouldn't normally call for a sacking but something here just doesn't ring true and if she's lied then I think she should go. £6 is really cheap even for well outside London area where I live.

wannaBe Sun 27-Sep-09 14:15:42

well, she messed up, she was given a fine (as per the law), so while she should have known better I think it should be left at that tbh.

I don't imagine for one minute that someone like her would have interviewed her own cleaner or even been aware of how much she was being paid - people like Baroness Scotland have secretaries to do all that for them.

And that aside, should the cleaner really be being quoted in the press now? I imagine they're paying her for her "story" so aren't they too now guilty of "employing" an illegal?

edam Sun 27-Sep-09 15:10:06

Don't see why the cleaner shouldn't be allowed to put her side of the story.

Slow's right, if you make the laws, especially if you are personally responsible for putting them in place, you have a duty to obey them even more closely than other citizens. Doing anything else is a. immoral and b. extraordinarily stupid.

(And you could argue she did obtain financial benefit if she got a cleaner for half the going rate...)

mmrsceptic Sun 27-Sep-09 15:17:09

What a cheapskate, she's bang to rights. No excuses, edam and slow completely right -- ignorance is no excuse.

vinblanc Sun 27-Sep-09 15:28:24

BS should do the honourable thing and resign.

There is only one reason for paying a foreign worker below market rates, and that is because they are illegal.

The employee in question has been silly too because as the spouse of a British citizen, she has an easy route to becoming legal.

The situation is so sad because not only was this woman earning a pittance, she was also sending much of it back to her family in Tonga. It's a familiar tale of illegal immigrants. They have much to teach us in terms of work ethic and family values.

sarah293 Sun 27-Sep-09 16:00:06

Message withdrawn

senua Sun 27-Sep-09 16:14:11

"Sounds to me as if it were a very silly oversight, which she rectified as soon as she was aware of it. She didn't make any financial gain from the situation.
All of us are human, and can occasionally make errors."

What a load of rubbish. She is an employer and therefore should know all about the laws regarding eligibility to work in this country, about the checks she should make, about employers' liability insurance, about Health & Safety at work, about how to run PAYE/NI, about minimum wage levels, etc etc etc etc etc etc etc etc.
She should know because every employer has to know these laws which are introduced by people like Baroness Scotland. How can she impose these rules on Joe Public and then claim that they were too bureaucratic for her to operate? Double standards!

edam Sun 27-Sep-09 16:18:56

I asked about that further down the thread, Riven, haven't had any answers yet...

foxinsocks Sun 27-Sep-09 16:23:15

think she'd have to apply for a spousal visa and it doesn't sound like she did that

she wouldn't be able to work automatically just because she's married to him - she'd need to apply for that visa, as I understand it

CoffeeCrazedMama Sun 27-Sep-09 16:27:17

I pay my cleaner twice this and would be ashamed to pay less, this being inner London (and me wanting a good job done).

senua Sun 27-Sep-09 16:28:43

"the wedding that slipped through a legal loophole"

colditz Sun 27-Sep-09 16:31:49

Going rate here is about £6 an hour, £15 an hour for a cleaner is INSANE

CNyle Sun 27-Sep-09 16:32:22

god id never ask a cleaner her immigration status

senua Sun 27-Sep-09 16:37:57

Well you should, CNyle, unless you want a £5,000 fine. And keep a record of the fact that you checked - another thing that BS forgothmm to do.

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