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Ucatt offers support to 'exploited' workers

Construction union Ucatt is to establish a vulnerable workers unit to provide assistance to workers facing exploitation or forced to work in dangerous circumstances.

The unit, which has received funding from the department of business, innovation and skills via the union modernisation fund, will be initially set up for two years. It will start with two staff and be based in Derby, but service workers across all of England.

It will also be available to all construction workers, not just Ucatt members, general secretary Alan Ritchie said.

Its initial priorities will be to help young workers and apprentices, agency and migrant workers, and those who regularly handle with asbestos.

Mr Ritchie said a number of organisations had already pledged their support to the project, including the Health and Safety Executive, Citizens Advice, Jobcentre Plus, Manchester University Business School, Community Links, HMRC, Wigan & Leigh/Lewisham college and OH Parsons Solicitors.

The unit will be launched on Tuesday at the Hallmark Hotel in Derby.