Government names stores underpaying minimum wage workers

Wagamama fined for failing to pay the minimum wage

The 179 employers - mostly hospitality businesses, retailers and hairdressers - have been fined a total of £1.3m for underpaying their staff.

Meanwhile, Marriott, which has a hotel at Lynch Wood in Peterborough, failed to pay £71,723 to 279 workers.

Pizza delivery and takeaway 1st Pizza Direct in Inverness underpaid 87 staff by a total of £25668 while Citi Dental Surgery in Glasgow owed a total of £8733 to two workers.

A report by the Liverpool Echo revealed that St Helens had failed to pay £5,536.92 to 117 workers.

The Scottish firms are among 179 employers across the United Kingdom named in the latest round of the scheme to expose those who fail to pay the minimum wage, which ranges from £7.50 an hour for over 25s to £4.05 an hour for under-18s and £3.50 for apprentices.

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It said the issue arose due to its former practice of allowing staff to pay for tickets and merchandise bought from the club from their monthly salaries.

According to figures from the Business Department, Wagamama, which has a branch in Peterborough on Long Causeway, was said to have failed to pay £133,212 to 2,630 workers, the most of any of the companies named.

£7.50, the national minimum wage. 9,200 minimum wage workers were cheated out of £1.1 million.

A Wagamama statement said the company has always paid minimum wage and makes sure that staff receive 100 per cent of their tips.

Wagamama blamed what it described as an inadvertent misunderstanding of how the minimum wage regulations applied to uniforms, adding "as soon as we were made aware of this in 2016 we acted immediately to correct the position".

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The business minister, Andrew Griffiths, said: "There are no excuses for short-changing workers". The guilty companies, which include scores of small businesses, will have to pay back £2.4 million in wages and fines.

"We have gladly made payments to current and previous employees who missed out dating back from 2016 to 2013". "We have since updated our payroll system so that this can not happen again and reimbursed all impacted associates", a spokesperson said. We have also updated our uniform policy and we now pay a uniform supplement to cover the black jeans.

"The Low Pay Commission is pleased to see the government maintaining the momentum of its minimum wage enforcement".

The government is to launch a campaign to raise awareness of the new rates and encourage workers to speak to their employer if they think they are being underpaid.

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