05 June 2014 #Immigration
The Financial Times reported this week that the raids targeting businesses including care homes, hotels and restaurants, building companies and recruitment agencies and other small businesses began on Monday.
Efforts by the Home Office to keep the raids named Operation Centurion a secret were unsuccessful following leaks by campaigners of the names of the businesses being targeted. The government also faced charges that the initiative was politically driven in light of the recent European elections and the UK Independence Party’s success.
The Home Office robustly denied the campaigners’ allegations that the documents outlining the two week programme were racial profiling stating:
“The Home Office does not engage in racial profiling and any suggestion to this effect is both abhorrent and completely without foundation... Our enforcement activity, conducted in conjunction with other government agencies, is intelligence-led and targets sectors of the economy where illegal working is suspected.
We do not perform ‘fishing expeditions’ and in the case of the current operation we have worked carefully with employers who share the public’s concerns about illegal working.”
However Labour MP and chair of the Commons’ Home Affairs Select Committee questioned if genuine intelligence was behind the raids.