A SUTHERLAND contractor and Inverness hairdresser are among the latest businesses to be “named and shamed” for failing to pay their workers the national minimum wage.
Edward Mackay Contractor Ltd of Brora and Crook & Crook Limited of Inverness were the only Highland firms among 260 UK businesses named by the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) in the latest list of offending firms.
Edward Mackay Ltd, which was originally a road haulage company before diversifying into construction and civil engineering work, was among the five companies owing most to its employees and was fined for failing to pay a total of £51,403.65 to four workers.
Crook & Crook Limited failed to pay £5726.77 to two workers.
In total, the named firms owed £1.7 million to some 16,000 workers and were fined £1.3 million for underpayment.
Retail, hairdressing and hospitality businesses were among the most prolific offenders in the 13th round of named and shamed firms.
Common reasons for failure to pay the correct amount include failing to pay workers for travelling between jobs, deducting money for uniforms and not paying for overtime.
However, UK business minister Margot James commented: “There is no excuse for not paying staff the wages they are entitled to and the government will come down hard on businesses that break the rules.
“That’s why we are naming hundreds of employers who have been short changing their workers; and to ensure there are consequences for their wallets as well as their reputation, we’ve levied millions in back pay and fines.”