Unite Scotland says a list of shame detailing Scottish employers who have failed to pay the national minimum wage shows the urgent need for workers to join a trade union.
Today (Thursday 11 August) the Westminster government published a list of nearly 200 companies across the UK who had failed to pay workers the legal rate for the job.
Between them, the 198 companies named owed £466,219 in arrears. All of the money owed to these workers has been paid back to them.
In Scotland, 23 employers made the shame list, owing a total of £44,565. The workers affected worked in a wide range of businesses, including hairdressers, restaurants, nurseries, care homes, hotels and construction firms.
Unite Scottish secretary Pat Rafferty said: "The best protection for workers is when they come together to protect themselves - and that means joining a trade union.
"Some of these employers might have made honest mistakes, but there are still too many rogue companies who try to prop up their profits by exploiting their workers. And there are too many Scottish workers who are being intimidated and scared into going along with it. Today's figures are, sadly, probably just the tip of the iceberg.
"For years, we have seen the growth of a low-wage economy, with insecure jobs where people don't know if they'll be getting paid work from day to day. It's no coincidence that this has happened at a time when trade union membership has fallen.
"Our message to workers is not to sit back and take it. When you join a trade union like Unite, you join a movement of millions of people, and together we can help protect your jobs, your wages and your basic rights, and bring dignity and fairness to your workplace."
For further information, or to an arrange an interview, contact Unite Scotland media officer David Eyre on 07960 451631. Email email@example.com
Notes to editors:
The full list of employers paying less than the minimum wage is available here:
Scottish companies on the list included:
- Mr Ronald McConnachie, trading as Bay Newsagents, Weymss Bay, Renfrewshire, owed £12,527.97 to 3 workers
- Busy Bee Nursery (Newport-on-Tay) Ltd, trading as Little Beehive Nursery, Fife, owed £9,065.14 to 7 workers
- Topstaff Employment Ltd, Glasgow, owed £3,355.25 to 20 workers
- Macdonalds Hotels & Resorts Ltd, Bathgate, West Lothian, owed £2,123.10 to 6 workers
- Hairstopper Limited, Ayr, owed £2,021.07 to 2 workers
- Ms Susanna Ross, trading as Susanna’s Hair & Beauty, Ayr, owed £2,013.22 to 1 worker
- K Construction (Scotland) Ltd, Edinburgh, owed £1,916.61 to 2 workers
- Newlay Civil Engineering Ltd, Airdrie, North Lanarkshire, owed £1,860.60 to 1 worker
- Cheasty Ltd, trading as Papa Johns, Edinburgh, EH8, owed £1,811.33 to 19 workers
- Sine Hair & Beauty Salon Ltd, Glasgow, owed £1,027.65 to 1 worker
- JR’s Hairdressing Ltd, Glasgow, owed £1,000.16 to 2 workers
- Ryce Limited, Fife, owed £935.96 to 1 worker
- Mr Abdul Muslim, trading as Light of India, Oban, Argyll and Bute, owed £927.60 to 1 worker
- Thomson ID Ltd, trading as Austen Thomson Hair, Edinburgh, owed £759.32 to 1 worker
- Mead Medical Services Ltd, trading as Lydiafield Care Home, Annan, owed £741.67 to 13 workers
- Fisher & Donaldson (St Andrews), Cupar, Fife, owed £574.32 to 6 workers
- Ms Alison Vallance, trading as Vallance Hair & Beauty, Edinburgh, owed £547.20 to 1 worker
- Mr Robert Louis Craig, trading as Craigs Courier Services, Falkirk, owed £484.90 to 1 worker
- Benkaz Ltd, Shotts, Lanarkshire, owed £266.71 to 1 worker
- Fury Murry’s (Paisley) Ltd, Paisley, owed £216.14 to 1 worker
- Miss Alison Margaret Smith, trading as AMS Hair & Beauty, Edinburgh, owed £150.00 to 2 workers
- Assist Homecare (Scotland) Ltd, Stevenston, Ayrshire, owed £134.21 to 1 worker
- Micro Fitness Ltd, Cumbernauld, Glasgow, owed £104.93 to 1 worker
Unite Scotland is the country’s biggest and most diverse trade union with 150,000 members across the economy. The union is led in Scotland by Pat Rafferty.