HC Deb 10 July 1973 vol 859 c1239
5. Mr. Worsley

asked the Secretary of State for Employment whether, before allowing work permits for hotel staff in London, he will ensure that the employers of such staff provide accommodation for them in order to avoid further overstraining the limited supply of furnished accommodation in London.

Mr. Dudley Smith

No, Sir. Many employers of hotel staff already provide or assist in finding accommodation for their foreign workers.

Mr. Worsley

Will my hon. Friend agree on reflection that this does not go far enough? Is he aware that men with work permits who are taken on by hotels often bring with them a great number of dependants who want to live in furnished accommodation, which is extremely short in central London? In my borough there are five such families in temporary accommodation which is provided for the homeless. Does not my hon. Friend agree on reflection that in this instance employers should pay the social cost of employing these people, including the cost of housing?

Mr. Smith

With respect to my hon. Friend, what he suggests would not have much bearing on the amount of furnished accommodation available. A high proportion of the staff of the hotels in central London will wish to live in the surrounding area, whether they are foreigners or British citizens. If hotel employers were obliged to find accommodation for their staff, no doubt they would seek it in the open market, and this would not alleviate the shortage. I know that my hon. Friend has great difficulty in his area and there has been in central London recently a burgeoning of hotels. I hope in due course that things will settle down.

Forward to