1F North Street, Kingston
Tel: (876) 967-5484
Fax: (876) 948-2831
Wednesday, March 15, 2023
Ministry of Labour and Social Security Ramps-Up Measures to Curtail Employment Scams and Illegal Operators of Unlicensed Employment Agencies
The Ministry of Labour and Social Security has ramped up its efforts to curtail employment scams and clamp down on illegal operators involved in recruiting persons to work overseas. Since the start of the year, investigations conducted by the Ministry’s Employment Agencies Unit, have identified 12 illegal recruitment activities.
Cease and Desist Orders were issued to the illegal operators. In at least 4 cases, the operators have been ordered to refund fees to their applicants, while two cases have been referred to the Jamaica Constabulary Force’s Fraud Squad for prosecution.
The Ministry is again reminding operators that, under the Employment Agencies Act, any entity intending to engage in the recruitment of workers in Jamaica, for local or overseas jobs is required to obtain a licence from the Ministry of Labour and Social Security. Each licence is valid for 12 months.
In the wake of a recent upsurge in employment scams, the Ministry has announced that it has adopted a zero-tolerance approach to employment scamming. Individuals or organizations operating without valid licences are urged to immediately cease and desist, and are encouraged to visit the Ministry’s offices to regularize their operations. Recruiters from overseas are encouraged to work with licensed employment agencies. Persons found operating in breach of the law may be fined
One Million dollars ($1,000,000.00) and/or face up to twelve (12) months imprisonment.
In the meantime, the Ministry is renewing its appeal to members of the public to ensure that they are working with licensed operators and to check the authenticity of job offers before paying over monies to recruiters. To confirm the authenticity of any offer for overseas employment or to confirm the list of Employment Agencies which are licensed to operate in Jamaica, contact the Ministry’s Employment Agencies Unit via WhatsApp at 876-553-5457 or visit the Ministry’s Website at www.mlss.gov.jm.
Contact: MLSS Communication Unit (876) 967-5484
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