New chair and chief executive of the GLAA announced

The Gangmasters and Labour Abuse Authority (GLAA) has appointed Michael Rich as its new chief executive and Margaret Beels as its new chair

Michael Rich, currently an executive director at Chesterfield Borough Council in Derbyshire, will lead the national law enforcement and compliance agency charged with protecting vulnerable people from exploitation when he takes up his post in early January.

He will be charged with:

• the delivery of the GLAA’s responsibilities for the national modern slavery agenda, providing leadership and direction to the workforce

• working co-operatively at a senior level with other enforcement agencies and a wider range of bodies, including the police and local authorities, to address offending behaviour by rogue businesses

• working with other enforcement bodies and the Director of Labour Market Enforcement to improve enforcement bodies’ coordinated handling of enforcement work

Michael Rich said:

"I am hugely excited to be joining the GLAA, it’s an organisation that is doing phenomenal work to protect vulnerable people. I am looking forward to joining colleagues and playing my part in helping prevent and detect labour exploitation."

His previous experience includes, spending 4 years with the Homes and Communities Agency that funds government housing programmes.

Meanwhile, Margaret Beels will take up her role as chair today (Wednesday 12 December). She has been in the position since 2011 and has been appointed for a further 2 years following a competitive recruitment process.

Her responsibilities include:

• providing strategic leadership for the operation of the GLAA
• ensuring the GLAA and its staff maintain the capability to deliver the organisation’s statutory responsibilities
• maintaining and developing effective partnerships at a strategic level with key bodies

She has previously overseen the expansion of the GLAA into a body with powers to investigate a wide range of labour market offences including non-payment of the minimum wage and modern slavery.

Margaret Beels said:

"The GLAA’s mission to protect vulnerable and exploited workers is increasingly important. I am proud to have been asked to continue as Chair of the Board which has oversight of this vital work."

The GLAA is a national law enforcement and compliance agency charged with protecting vulnerable people from exploitation. Its broad remit covers the entire labour market and it works closely with the Police, law enforcement and other agencies and strategic partners to protect vulnerable and exploited workers.

For more information visit the Gangmasters and Labour Abuse Authority website.