Minimum wage ‘name and shame’ list a complete farce, says Oldham businessman

A company director has criticised the government after his Failsworth-based business was named and shamed as failing to pay the minimum wage.

TMS Autoparts was one of 37 companies nationally named in a programme launched by business minister Jo Swinson as having not paid the minimum wage to workers.

The list states that Motorists Discount Store Ltd, trading as TMS Autoparts, neglected to pay one worker £2,025.19.

Company director, Andy Holden, told MM: “It’s a complete farce to be honest – a complete joke.

“When it first came out I was all in favour of it. I thought it was for people who were employing illegal workers but they are hitting people on technicalities.”

Mr Holden blamed the failure to pay the minimum wage on a clerical mix up as the incident related to an apprentice who was working for the company.

A rule change meant that when an apprentice has been working for over a year they must be paid the nineteen-year-old wage which the company did not know.

The company was fined £1,000 as top of being publically listed and have now paid the person in question the amount owed.

The biggest offender in the region however was Chi Yip Group Ltd in Middleton, which the government revealed neglected to pay £15,566.78 to 13 workers.

A spokesman from Chi Yip Group Ltd said a mistake was made involving some staff during a scheme with Manchester Learning and all staff have now been paid in full.

They said: “The fact that we had not paid some of the staff the minimum wage is a mistake, a genuine mistake. We had not gone out to exploit our staff.

“We are glad that they have found the mistake and these staff were eventually paid their full salary.”

The third Greater Manchester company shamed on the list was Adrien Mackenzie, trading as Maverick Models, who neglected to pay £205.52 to a worker.

They said there was a dispute over the amount of hours a member of staff had worked after they were sacked and when the hours were increased they then fell below the minimum wage.

The company’s records have since been altered to reflect this and the person in question has been paid in full.

Business Minister Jo Swinson said of the scheme: “Paying less than the minimum wage is illegal, immoral and completely unacceptable.

“If employers break this law they need to know that we will take tough action by naming, shaming and fining them as well as helping workers recover the hundreds of thousands of pounds in pay owed to them.”

Main image courtesy of Google Maps, with thanks.

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