The standard of accomodation for migrant workers living in caravans in Cornwall is the focus of a new safety and quality push.

The new guidance notes and a caravan checklist aimed at the owners of accommodation provided for migrant workers have been put together by a multi-agency group including Cornwall Fire and Rescue Service, Devon and Cornwall Police migrant worker team, Cornwall Council, the Home Office Immigration department, The Gangmasters Licensing Authority and the Health and Safety Executive.

The new guidance, which includes a list of caravan checks to be conducted regularly; a suggested tenancy agreement and a poster for tenants giving pictorial safety advice, will be personally delivered by representatives from each of the agencies.

PCSO Bev Faull of Devon and Cornwall Police said: “Following multi-agency visits to premises in Cornwall where caravans are provided for migrant workers who work on the farms, we realised there was a short fall in legislation covering the standards and use of such caravans.

"All the agencies noticed that there was room for improvement regarding maintaining sites and living conditions and it was felt that a joint approach to solving these issues would be the best way forward.

"We have worked together to provide written guidance so that the owners of the accommodation could be made aware of their obligations in the standards required as well as giving the tenants information about their rights and the standards that they could expect.

"So far we have identified 27 places where such caravan accommodation is provided and we will be visiting all of them to deliver the new guidance and to talk through any issues.

We have also found some sites with good standards and we wanted to build on these good examples.”

One good accommodation provider is Steve Berryman at Paul’s Green Farm, Townsend who says: “It’s a good scheme which safeguards tenants and ourselves, improving safety standards.”

All agencies involved will be delivering in person the caravans packs to the sites over the coming weeks, so expect a visit or contact PCSO 30268 Bev Faull on 07525 408028 if you don’t receive a pack or you think you would like to receive a pack.