Creation of a single enforcement body currently on hold
The Business Secretary, Grant Shapps, confirmed in a session of the Business Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) Committee held on 13 December 2022, that the commitment to introduce a single enforcement body is not currently being advanced.
The proposal for a single enforcement body consolidating three of the existing labour market enforcement bodies (HMRC's National Minimum Wage Enforcement, the Employment Agency Standards Inspectorate and the Gangmasters Labour Abuse Authority) was originally made in the government's Good Work Plan in December 2018, and the government confirmed in June 2021 that it would proceed with the proposal. This was going to be done via the Employment Bill and the single enforcement body was going to have an extensive remit to protect workers in relation to national minimum wage, labour exploitation and modern slavery, as well as enforcing the payment of holiday pay for vulnerable workers, and statutory sick pay.
Mr Shapps also confirmed in the BEIS session that there is no Employment Bill "on the cards per se". Instead, some of the commitments which were due to be contained in the Bill are being introduced via Private Members' Bills sponsored by the government (of which the Employment Relations (Flexible Working) Bill is one).